Home of an Emotional Idiot

While there were times when he wished he could roll back the clock and erase all the sadness, he had a hunch that if he did so, the joy would be diminished as well. And that was something he couldn't contemplate. (From At First Sight by Nicholas Sparks)

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Can People Change?

Is it possible for an adult to really change certain attitudes or behaviors that have been with them for their entire lives?

Mary loves to "reinvent" herself. From time to time she'll tell the family she's doing this and I give her credit, it's a big undertaking. But, truthfully, once she's done she never seems, to me, to be all that different from when she started.

I've been considering reinventing myself for a few reasons but I have to wonder if it really is possible. When I left for college, I was going to become a different person. I wasn't going to be as shy and reserved as I was at home and had been in high school. I was going to be popular. You know what? That never happened. I didn't change.

There are plenty of things I've been called in my day. On the positive, I've been called kind, caring, honest, trustworthy, admirable, reliable, dependable and loving. On the negative, I've been called an a** hole, a b****, selfish, stupid, shallow and ignorant.

At times I have certainly fit every one of these descriptions. (But why is it easier to believe and hold onto the negative?) Usually, when the negative terms have been used, I haven't been trying to be any of those things. I don't want to be any of those things.

Can someone who...
...is selfish change their ways to become less so?
...is stubborn learn to see and accept other people's points of view?
...is afraid of everything escape the fear and live?
...is selfless learn to put themselves first once in a while?
...allows people to walk all over them learn to stand up for themself?

My questions could go on and on but I think you get the point. Can people honestly change? And if they can, how?


  • At 6/01/2005 10:06 AM, Blogger patrice said…

    I think people can change for the most part. but I think they keep a little piece of the part they changed and it can show every once in a while. as someone who has HAD to change because of circumstance (well I guess there's always choices, but you know what I mean) I still find that there are days when I see a flash of that old patrice.

    I think it just takes alot of work. it can be exhausting. but once you work at it, it becomes easier and easier.

    what is it exactly that you want to change? who would benefit from the change you want to make?

  • At 6/01/2005 12:15 PM, Blogger GlitterGlamGirl05 said…

    I think change is part of life - that my .02 cents. Things change, circumstances change but underneath it all the person is still the same.

    For example, I always was quiet and shy in high school and when I got to college, I changed because I was put in a situation where I had to be more outgoing to make more friends. That change was good.

    The next change in my life is so nutty I don't know if I can do it without crying my eyes out (aka Mr. Right).

  • At 6/01/2005 12:28 PM, Blogger 28goingon40 said…

    Change is possible, but you can't make it happen. People adjust to their surroundings, we adapt. I moved to the city 3 years ago and I adapted. I try to stay my good ol' polite self and say excuse me on the T, but when everyone shoves me and no one moves when I do say it, I usually give up, I mean, I adapt.
    You can't decide one day to be less stubborn, or less selfish. I think something will cause it. I also think that certain people in your life can bring out the worst in you without you even realizing it...get rid of those people.
    That was a little more than my 2 cents, but you get the idea.

  • At 6/01/2005 12:37 PM, Blogger srini said…

    change is difficult. and you know why? because people are afraid to face reality - they continue to be the way they are, cos its easier that way.

    my take is that change is possible - however the basic nature of people doesnt change easily - unless they go through a major spiritual upheaval in life!

  • At 6/01/2005 2:50 PM, Blogger M.Thom said…

    Just to clarify...when I say I am reinventing myself, it is always said very tongue-in-cheek. I work on things that I think I am challenged by, but I basically like myself the way I am...so the reinvention are always more of a joke than anything.

  • At 6/03/2005 1:15 PM, Blogger Jen said…

    I think change is easier when it is accompanied by big external changes, such as moving to a new city, starting a new job, etc. Maybe it is because it is easier to change when you are around new people who don't know your old ways.

  • At 6/03/2005 1:55 PM, Blogger NME said…

    I think you can change some behaviors if you are diligent about it. Dieting, exercise, less TV. I don't however think you can change your core self. So say you want to be a more positive person. When you catch yourself being negative you can make an effort to seek out the positives. And this new behavior can become the norm for you in the long run - but the behavior is still an effort to do something different than your natural inclination.


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