A Brief Parable About Change

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes


Here is a quick story about behavioral change from Portia Nelson:

This is a story about quitting a bad habit, which is also a story about becoming an active agent in life.

In Chapter I, she is a passive victim of her circumstances. She has no control over her situation and no capacity to help herself.

In Chapter II, she is beginning to recognize a pattern, and she is clearly unhappy with it.

In Chapter III, she sees the truth – her own choices are the cause of her suffering. She takes responsibility for her situation, and she becomes response-able.

In Chapter IV, she makes a better choice, resisting the temptation to fall into her old routine.

In Chapter V, she makes an even better choice, avoiding the very place where that temptation resides.

This is the pattern by which all such changes occur: Ignorance gives way to frustration, frustration produces awareness, awareness leads to empowerment, and empowerment creates freedom.


Did you like what you just read? Then please share this with anyone who might find it useful.

And if you haven’t already, enter your email here to subscribe to this blog.

Subscribe and you’ll receive an easily accessible list of over 50 of my favorite self-improvement resources!

This curated list includes recommended books and book summaries, essential blogs and excellent articles, helpful videos and talks, and free online courses, sorted for your convenience into these categories: Mental Health & Happiness, Purpose, Mindfulness & Meditation, Social Skills, Behavioral Change, Productivity, Creativity, Entrepreneurship, Effective Learning, and Brain Exercise & Curiosity.

Subscribing is also the best way to keep up with the latest posts from Becoming Better. I promise, no spam ever. Unsubscribe at any time.