Being the person you want to be: Tips for making positive changes in life - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Ahwatukee Medical

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Being the person you want to be: Tips for making positive changes in life

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Kristina Welker

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Posted: Monday, October 3, 2011 9:26 am

Why do some people change and others resist? Why do some people embrace the tools in order to make the changes they need to make while other people stay stuck?

The most satisfying part of my job is seeing people who embrace the tools they need to find happiness. On the other hand, I also see people who seek counseling and refuse to make changes. They stay stuck.

There are many reasons why people refuse to change in spite of the fact that they are unhappy. The reasons are varied, but here are examples:

• Some people do not change out of habit.

• Some do not change because they think it would take too much work.

• Some fear change.

• Some refuse to change because they are getting their needs met just as they are.

• Some refuse to change because they believe they don't deserve anything better.

Fortunately, research shows that you can effectively change if you want to. You do not have to be a born optimist. This trait is not hard wired at birth. Optimism can be learned. Many studies show that if you possess three main characteristics - attitude, commitment and support - then positive change will take place.


Replace negative thoughts with positive ones. Look and your past accomplishments. This will motivate you to believe in yourself. By choosing to learn from your mistakes, you can let go and move forward.


If you truly want to make changes in your life, your goals must be crystal clear. Goals must be realistic, and attainable. Be committed to making change. Do not let negative people or thoughts get in the way of your commitment.


Build a strong support system. Talk about your distressing emotions and adverse experiences. Enlist others to be in your corner who will provide encouragement. These supportive people may include a professional counselor or life coach, who are trained to give you a compass to find your way. With attitude, commitment and support you will make positive changes in your life and be the person you want to be!

• Dr. Kristina Welker obtained her doctorate in psychology and is a licensed professional counselor and a member of the Ahwatukee Behavioral Health Network. Reach her at (480) 893-6767 or

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