Quick Fixes Don't Work in
Quick fixes don't work in personal development
Most of us don't want to hear
this, but; there really
are no quick
fixes or short cuts to personal development
(or to anything else
worthwhile, for that matter).
The road to bettering
ourselves is a long continous one that requires time, commitment and self-discipline
Of course, it's human nature to look for the quickest, easiest way to
get what we want. We tend to look for the one size fits all solution to
our problems. We want to find the book, the DVD, or program that will
fix us and make everything all right - overnight - and we want
Well here's the reality - apart from being improbable and unrealistic,
most things just don't work that way. One of the reasons they don't, is
that quick fixes are neither lasting, nor sustainable. A quick fix for
any problem is only meant to hold things together until an effective
long-term solution is found. It's merely the proverbial band aid.
Making positive lasting change in your
life takes time and
this is why:
- A new habit takes at least 21 days of consistent
effort to set in - When we try to change a behavior/habit or
implement a new one, it takes at least 21 days of consistent repetative
behavior for it to set in. If it happens to be an addiction, it could
take as long as 35 days, or more. No quick fix is designed to change habits.
- Habituation and homeostasis factors -
Habituation refers to the things we do daily without having to think
about doing them. Another way to put it is 'getting used to things'.
Homeostasis, a term used mostly in the context of biology, is a
regulatory function that keeps an organism stable. An example would be
when temperatures outdoors fall or raise significantly, our body
temperature remains stable. Psychological homeostasis works similarly
in that it keeps you fixed in the same habits or mindsets whether they
are working for you or not. That is why it's so hard to change a habit.
Habituation and homeostasis, while they are necessary mechanisms so
that you don't have to rethink how to do everything every single time
you go to do it, they make it very difficult for quick fixes or
behavior changes to take hold permanently.
- Certain endeavors rely on ongoing repetitious
strategies in order to take effect - If you want to lose
weight permanently, or if you intend on having successful
relationships, plan to work on it for the long haul. For instance, if
you want to lose 20 pounds of weight, you cannot do it by eating little
and well for only one day. Instead, you would have to implement a plan
whereby you consume and expend a set amount of calories consistently
over a given period of time. Then the weight would come off slowly and
Likewise, to maintain a good relationship,
you couldn't be pleasant and agreeable with someone for one or two days
and then expect to have an understanding or connection. It would take
days, months, sometimes even years to build a trusting, mutually
fulfilling relationship. It cannot happen overnight.
Only by working on goals slowly and steadily can you
achieve lasting and rewarding results. By contrast crash dieting,
blitzing, cramming, or bombarding (quick fixes) will derail your
- It takes hard work and commitment - How
many times have we started a new project, exercise routine, or diet
plan bursting with energy and enthusiasm only to see wane and wither
away? Too many, I’m sorry to say. The truth is, it isn’t easy to stay
focused and committed, which is why, once again, we look for the quick
fix instead of buckling down and getting on with it. If we recognize
that it will take time, hard work and continued dedication to develop
and improve ourselves, we would save a lot of time and heartache.
Examples where quick fixes have backfired:
Who doesn't want to be rich?
In 1993 Suzanne Mullins won $4.2 million in the Virginia lottery. She
subsequently became deeply in debt to a company that lent her money
using the winnings as collateral. What she came to realize is that in
our culture we tend to believe that money solves all problems and if
people had more of it their troubles would be over. Unfortunately, when
money is acquired quickly and suddenly it can cause more problems than
Evelyn Adams won the New Jersey lottery twice (1985, 1986) amounting to
approximately $5.4 million. Today the money is gone and Adams lives in
William Post won $16.2 million in the Pennsylvania lottery in 1988 but
now lives on his Social Security check. "I wish it never happened. It
was totally a nightmare," says Post.
Susan Bradley, a financial planner who wrote Sudden Money:
Managing a Financial Windfall
, says "People think windfalls
are about money. But it's really all about change and transition ...
and people need time to adjust." (i.e. quick fixes do not last, nor do
they actually fix anything).
What happens when we crash diet to lose weight quickly?
Although much has been written lately about how losing weight quickly
is unhealthy and unproductive many still attempt it. Losing weight too
quickly, like any sudden change to your body, is dangerous. We know
that fad diets, diet pills, and fasting indeed induce rapid weight
loss, however they also cause you to lose muscle mass and may injure
the heart and other vital organs in the process. The answer? Instead of
aiming for an overnight miracle (quick fix), opt for a sensible
nutritious eating plan as well as a realistic exercise regimen.
The bottom line is that personal development, or self-improvement, is
hard work! It takes time, consistent effort, focus, discipline and
patience. Remember the work you do daily, monthly and yearly culminates
in a rewarding, successful outcome.
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