The Elephant and the Rider- Change and OCPD

In the book "Switch: How to Change when Change is Hard " the authors talk about two sides in our minds that have to work together if we are going to change. The emotional mind and the analytical mind. A lot of times, the emotional mind is strong but not heading in the right direction. Or, the analytical mind gets all focused on the facts and planning (obsession anyone)?

They use the metaphor of a rider on an elephant- the elephant is the emotion, pulling along the rider and very hard to tame and direct. The rider needs the elephant to move, and the elephant needs the rider to point out where to go, and to show it that mice aren't something to be afraid of!

The book says that motivation (elephant emotion) and direction (rider pulling the reigns) both have to work together. Then, we can change everything from behavior to a corporation.

I see what they mean every time I plan and set a specific goal, then simple drop the ball as my emotions start to falter. Yes, I plan get in touch with a friend I haven't seen in awhile. I can plan all day and night, but when it comes down to picking up the phone, my emotional elephant struggles.

"What if she doesnt want to talk to you? She is busy! You are going to seem desperate..." etc...

Time to reign it in! Getting a handle on emotions is a whole other challenge, but understanding these two sides helps to appeal to others as well as yourself. I can think of how good it would feel to talk to my friend, and prop up my mood thinking about all the great friends i do keep in touch with.

When it comes to helping "direct" other people's elephants, you can't just push emotional buttons or give a dry blueprint for what you want.

Give that emotional elephant a kick, then lay out the road map to drive it down!

For me, getting over "perfection" is part ending the over-analayzing while also not getting paralyzed by fearful. I have to feel positive, and also give myself small specific steps to guide me. Next time I feel that struggle, to fall back on habit or to give in to fear, I know thats when I have a opportunity to practice getting my Elephant and Rider exactly where I want them to go: toword a positive, fufilling life!

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