Change: Turn a Dial or Flip a Switch?

Change is a fascinating thing.

We often *want* to change something like we want to flip a lightswitch. It’s in one direction and we want to flip it the other way.

We’re unrepped and we wanna be repped.
We’re nonunion and we wanna be union.
We’re not in LA and we wanna be in LA.
We’re unhealthy and we wanna be fit.
We’re single and we wanna be coupled.

And so on.

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But change — meaningful, lasting change — is much more like a dial being turned up or down on something. Not so much the flip of a switch.

So, we WANT change to be one way… but it’s not that way. Or, at least ENDURING change isn’t often that way.

Victoria BC

As I write this, we’re at one of my favorite stops on the way to the new year… 100 days out. Yup. September 23rd marks 100 days left in 2016, and this is a heads up that there could be some really great change made — lasting, enduring, meaningful change — in these last 100 days.

But only if you see it as turning a dial, rather than flipping a switch.

So, I’ll ask you, what dial could you turn over these last 100 days of 2016?

And before you answer, I’ll tell you a bit about my recent blip with the whole switch-flipping thing.

Y’all know I did #Whole30, right? (If not, read up on it here.) And to be honest, a switch totally flipped for me. I had my meltdown before starting, started, and was full-on binary in my commitment to every single facet of the journey.

Until day 31. Reintroduction. Or as I prefer to call it, “The start of my three-day booze and cheese party.”

I know.

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I turned what should’ve been a quick one-day test to see how my bod handled “poisons” after getting so clean then right back to the healthier lifestyle, forever having learned the lesson that treats are treats… not daily indulgences… into a reckless bender that took me a week from which to recover.

Welp, with that, I got a big ol’ reminder that there’s a reason flip-switch changes DON’T WORK in the long term. We simply aren’t built for hurtling in one direction, full-speed, slamming on the breaks, pulling a U-turn, and immediately continuing on in the new direction just as fast as we were traveling before.

That’s how you get whiplash, for cryin’ out loud!

So, here I sit headed into the final 100 days of 2016 in a really great place on my dial. I’m back to #Whole30 compliant as a lifestyle, with a bit o’ treats here and there once in a while, and always mindfully. The flip-switching work I did reminded me of the importance of incremental change. Of daily commitment. Of recommitting when the dial turns the other direction a tiny bit.

Of forgiving myself when I use the flip-switching muscle by mistake.

Now I’ll ask you… what can you do in these last 100 days of 2016 that will really make a difference… and create LASTING change?

Self-taping? Getting that script of yours finished? Re-editing your demo reel? Updating your show bible? Exercising daily? Treating yourself better?

Oh my gosh, think about the value 100 straight days of positive self-talk could have in your life! You could be a totally different person in just a few months thanks to all that self-love and self-care! And you’ll do it by turning a dial rather than flipping a switch if you set yourself up for success with reasonable, do-able, sustainable actions that can take place *consistently* over these 100 days.

One ninja suggested writing down every victory (even the tiniest one) and placing the strip of paper into a jar. On New Year’s Day, she looks forward to opening the jar and pulling through each strip of paper, reading them all, and celebrating the victories that she’ll have accumulated by year-end.

What a great idea!

Do you have any suggestions to share? Any prepping-for-success tips you can toss into the comments below, to help inspire others as they start up their 100-day challenge with us?

Have you figured out what you’re going to do? What you’d like to change? Whether you’ll be able to resist the urge to see all this as a bunch of switch-flipping and instead turn a dial a wee bit every day (and not panic when it twists the other way)?

Share with me! I cannot wait to celebrate these last 100 days of 2016 with you!

Onward,


Bonnie Gillespie is living her dreams by helping others figure out how to live theirs. Wanna work with Bon? Start here. Thanks!

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8 Comments

  1. Brooke Spivey September 20, 2016 at 3:43 am

    Thanks for being here, and writing your thoughts down. I read them, and I usually feel more motivated. I really, really liked this one. I’m vegan (new, only like two months) and I can relate a lot to what you are saying here. Being vegan is hard. Some days all you want to do is eat cheese. Last year I gave up on it pretty quickly because of that. This year I’m learning that even if I mess up and eat cheese doesn’t mean I have to throw in the towel. It just means that I’ve dialed back to the old me crap. Anyways, I’m an actor too, and I truly appreciate your thoughts and advice, so thanks for writing them down!

    Reply
  2. Greg September 20, 2016 at 8:35 pm

    This is such an overwhelming thought because there are SO many things I want to change about my life and what I’m doing. I guess the things that I want to do the most are:

    1) Get new headshots
    2) Get back into acting class
    3) Get a stream of income that is time-flexible so I can get gigs
    4) Get a camera and develop a self-tape routine / audition routine
    5) Get fit (lose 30 lbs)
    6) Get all my shit together (you know what I mean)

    There are so many more.

    Reply
  3. Bonnie Gillespie Bonnie Gillespie September 20, 2016 at 11:20 pm

    Brooke — Absolutely my pleasure. I’m so glad this post motivated you. Congrats on your veganism! The cutting out of dairy in my #Whole30 journey was the thing I was most nervous about, during the planning stages. I’m so glad you’re building up your muscle for success with this. And I’m glad the dial visual is one you’ll be able to use.

    Greg — Let’s try and make it LESS overwhelming by tackling the things on that list that are 100% within your control, starting with ONE at a time. Getting ultra specific is a great start. Prioritizing — perhaps starting with not what feels most important but instead what feels most do-able. Building a muscle of success, one thing at a time, will help you do the next one and then the next. I’m sending you loads of good vibes!

    Reply
  4. Heather Pache September 21, 2016 at 9:23 am

    Oy vey!! The lists. I’m ready for BIG steps with you Bonnie and your manner speaks directly to me. I’m SO grateful for that!! So, here’s my 100 day list:

    #1) Find apartment-move to LA.
    •Do SOMETHING to refresh my demo reel-I’ve been working for footage for a while and I still have nothing to show for it. Something must be done with this.
    •finish my script
    •feng shui my resumé
    •update my show bible
    •exercise daily
    •meditate daily
    •finish my novel!
    •Update headshot for a more personal/professional expression of my character.
    •HIT my targets
    •Get representation

    Reply
    1. Sonia September 22, 2016 at 10:07 am

      Hey sunshine. In regards to finding an apartment. The Aussie in LA Facebook group always have rooms going. So a safer intro as everyone knows of each other in there. No craiglist surprises 🙂

      Reply
  5. Candace Mabry September 23, 2016 at 10:17 am

    I’ve been looking forward to this, but I have such a hard time focusing on ONE thing! I want to do ALL the things! Health, finances, career, branding, networking, decluttering… I spend too much time in the preparation and I realize that the research I think is helping is actually too much and I need to just start DOING. I could spend hours on Pinterest just looking at goal setting and different challenges instead of taking action on anything, thanks adult ADHD!! Here’s what I’ve decided to do. I’m going back through my planner for the year (this year I used the Inner Guide Planner, pretty neat stuff), I’m looking at all the goals I’ve written and re-written and am still not getting to. I have to evaluate, do I even still want this? I’m going to do 100 days of wrapping things up. I want to see progress on these things I keep wanting, but haven’t broken it down into attainable mini-goals, and letting go of the things that aren’t speaking to me right anymore. I’m grateful for the 100 days opportunity because it gives me a chance to slow down and focus on just one day at a time. Just do 1 thing everyday that is working towards my goals instead of letting the overwhelm get the best of me.

    Reply
  6. Bonnie Gillespie Bonnie Gillespie September 23, 2016 at 1:17 pm

    Heather — Fantastic list! So many things that YOU control! You can do this, babe! I’m so excited to support you in your journey. <3

    Sonia -- Thank you for the assist for Heather in her apartment search. That's so very sweet (and so very ninja) of you! XO

    Reply
  7. Bonnie Gillespie Bonnie Gillespie October 25, 2016 at 5:37 pm

    Candace — I missed your comment before! How is your 100 days of wrapping up going? Yes, the “just start DOING” of it is key. That’s why “Launch at 85%” is such a big focus in the ninja journey. We can spend forever getting ready for a takeoff we never DO!

    Thanks for sharing about the Inner Guide Planner. I’d not heard of that before! Sending you love!

    Reply

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