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One of my friends said, “Change is good. You go first.” His humorous comment reflects the difficulty many of us face when we can’t seem to muster the force that would change unwanted circumstances. But what if you changed this mantra to, “Change is good, I’ll go first.”


Many people seek help, but usually to see how they can change someone or something other than themselves. This never works. How can you expect someone else to work on themselves while you sit back and remain the same? The only person you need ever change is yourself. Once that happens, change is all around you.


If only I had a job where I was appreciated and paid what I’m worth.’   ‘Why can’t my wife stop spending?’ ‘Why is my brother drinking himself to death?’  ‘I can’t stand my neighborhood, no one’s friendly.’ ‘As long as my wife makes desserts, I can’t lose weight.’ These are common thoughts that produce consistent results, nothing at all. Also, every one of these conditions is self-made.


If you want to change your life, you must be the change you wish. Direct all your energy to yourself – not others. If you’re not happy with your job, get another and don’t settle. A job is like any other relationship. The dissatisfying jobs are what make us appreciate the better positions. If someone is drinking or spending too much, who’s financing the problem? If your neighbors aren’t friendly, be friendly just because it feels good or focus on neighbors who are receptive. If you’re stuck in a habit, you don’t like, focus on that habit instead of someone else’s.


Some people say they can’t change. If this is the case, they should take an honest self-inventory and admit they won’t change.


Change requires personal effort, and if you don’t do the work or figure out why you’re stuck in circumstances you don’t like, you’ll remain in an abyss of despair. Change the one person you can control – yourself. You might be surprised that the effort on your part will create change all around you. Then you will realize the secret to achieving the results that you wanted all along.

Join our movement.

Donna Marks believes that the models for diagnosis, treatment, and addiction have failed. Her mission is to help save at least one million lives by 2030, through education and prevention. She has been an author, consultant, educator, public speaker, licensed psychotherapist, and addictions counselor in private practice in Palm Beach, Florida for more than thirty years. In 1989, Dr. Marks developed a chemical dependency treatment program at Palm Beach Community College, that has since grown into a four-year degree program, and for which she was granted an Award of Appreciation. She became licensed as a Mental Health Counselor in 1987. In 1989, she earned a Doctorate Degree in Adult Education, then became a Certified Addictions Professional, Certified Gestalt Therapist, Certified Psychoanalyst, Hypnotherapist, and Certified Sex Therapist.

Dr. Marks is the author of the 22-award winning book, Exit the Maze: One Addiction, One Cause, One Cure.

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