Becoming the Next Version of You

by Brian Bruce

How exactly do we become a new version of ourselves?

What’s the key to making conscious, personal changes?

When I was thinking about this the other day, what came to mind were two components:

  1. A decision to do or be something different
  2. Some kind of action that reflects that decision.

And as I thought about that, it occurred to me that each of those two components doesn’t have to be difficult. And what I mean by that is that if you take the emotion out of it, the decision and the action on their own are not difficult.

But the reality for most of us is that change is difficult. Why is that? I think part of it is having the belief of difficulty ingrained in ourselves.

Most of us grew up around people who literally would tell us, “Change (and life in general) is hard,” and that “Change doesn’t happen overnight.”

And if belief governs our reality, which I definitely believe it does, then if we believe that change is difficult, it makes sense that we would experience it as difficult. So I think that’s part of it. And we also seem to be creatures of habit. We like following our established patterns. It just seems to be how we’re wired. We have an ego that apparently wants to keep us safe, so it has a tendency to resist anything that’s unknown because, to the ego, “unknown” equals “unsafe.” So the difficulty in transforming in large part comes from our perspective, our habits, and our fears surrounding change. (And then what really locks in this difficulty is the habit of judging ourselves. I’ll save the topic of judgment for another episode, but here’s a spoiler alert…I’m not a fan 😉

But the fantastic, amazing, awesome news is that at any moment we can transform. We can still choose to be different…despite our habits and fears…and even better, the transformation can be instantaneous. What it takes, though, is a conscious decision and then a willingness to make a shift within ourselves. If you think about it, we are all choosing and reinforcing who we are in every moment of every day, and so at any point, we can choose to change what we reinforce. Isn’t that an empowering thought? For me, this is the key to conscious and instant transformation.

The power really does lie in each moment. And we access it not by TRYING to become someone new or WORKING TOWARDS becoming a new version of ourselves. We access it by embodying a new version of ourselves in the moment…here and now. (It doesn’t matter what circumstances you find yourself in either; this is about who and how you decide to be within whatever circumstances you find yourself.) This is how we can take the concept that everything is energy and actually apply it to our physical daily life. By shifting our energy in the moment. For example, let’s say you want to be more confident…you could actually choose to embody confidence at any time (or whatever else you wanted to be). We all have access to the universal archetype of confidence and what that looks like and even what it feels like. This is the power of all of us being energetically connected to everything. You have all the traits of humanity to call upon, not just the ones you’re currently showcasing. So you could tap into that and then step into the version of you that’s confident. It’s there; you just maybe haven’t practiced accessing that trait and being it…that’s all. So this is about recalibrating your mind and your emotional state. It’s breaking the habit of being insecure and feeling insecure by practicing being something else instead.

A good analogy is if you were in a play and assigned the role of a confident you (or whatever trait you choose). How would you play that character? What does that version of you sound like? How do they talk, how do they walk, how do they stand, what are their thoughts? What do they believe? How do they interact with others? These are the kinds of things you would focus on. Now, when you first do this, I can think of two reasons why it’s not likely to last. First, it takes a lot of awareness. This new way of being isn’t yet a habit, so you would need to make that decision to embody that new trait consciously moment by moment to continue being that new you. And if you’re not used to living in conscious awareness of yourself, you’re gonna fall back into normal patterns. Honestly, even if you are a super conscious and mindful person, life will most likely distract your attention at some point, and you’re going to fall back into your default mode…that’s just natural. And the second reason why this new you most likely won’t last very long is because it’s gonna feel unnatural. Again, because we seem to be these creatures of habit. And these habits create an energetic signature within us. So if you’re used to being insecure or timid, there’s an energetic signature to that. Even if you consciously want to be different, there’s still a certain level of comfort in being how you’ve always been. And it’s going to be tempting to want to return to this comfort. Remember, the ego gravitates towards what is known, even if it’s not ultimately what you want. So annoying, I know.

But that just means that embodying a new version of ourselves is something that we need to practice in order for it to take hold. When we practice this consciously, even if it’s for a short bit of time, we’re going to start becoming familiar with what our new selves feel like. What is at first a new feeling…one that feels strange…is going to start feeling not so strange. As much as we are conditioned to resist change, we are also incredibly adaptable. So if you can continue to transform for short moments of time, you can then start linking those moments together. And that’s when real powerful change happens. Long-term transformation happens when we practice short-term transformation moment by moment and then increase how frequently and consistently we do that.

And it’s not so much about the physical actions that we take, as it is about the internal shift in our energy. Remember, the changes in your external world follow the changes you make to your internal world.

We are so accustomed to overstimulation and outward focus that we have a tendency to think that for a change to have any real value and impact, it has to be big and obvious, something that’s really noticeable and that stands out. But that’s not the case at all. The subtle changes are just as important as the big and obvious changes.

Just because a change is subtle does not mean that it is small. The subtle shifts we make within ourselves really are the foundation of transformation.

So remember, you really do have the power to transform yourself, and the key to doing it is by embodying the new you within short snippets of time and then doing that as consistently and frequently as possible.

So what is it within yourself that you want to transform today? It’s helpful to write it down and keep it somewhere you’ll see throughout the day. Even on a rubber band or something that you can wear around your wrist so that every time you see it you’re reminded of your intention. And then practice being that today. Can you stretch yourself just a little bit past your comfort zone and start acclimating to the new energy of who you want to be, the new version of you?

You don’t even have to do this in front of anyone. I mean, it’s awesome if you can incorporate it into your normal, daily interaction with others. But that’s really not even necessary. One of my favorite ways to practice this is by taking a walk with my dog while embodying new versions of myself. All that really matters is that you do it. Take it from theory and turn it into practice. That’s really the name of the game here.

And as you are going through this process of transforming, remember to be light about it. Have fun and play and enjoy the feeling of being how you want to be. There is so much power in that.

I’m going to leave you with a message I received in meditation a couple of months ago that touches on this process of transformation. And the message is this:

“Have you forgotten that you are here to transform? Start embracing the unknown so that you can let go of the past. Let go of the habits that keep you tethered to your old self. For while it was a beautiful version of you, it is not who you are now. Life asks you to continue to change; continue evolving. Do not allow yourself to dwell on who you once were. Welcome the new version of yourself, the one who is now being called forth. Dive bravely into the new thoughts, feelings, ideas, and actions that inspire you. The feeling of discomfort is evidence that you are doing exactly what you came here to do, and you are so very loved for it.”

Wishing you a beautiful rest of your day 🙂 -Brian