The Student News Site of Dyer County School High School

Tribal Media

The Student News Site of Dyer County School High School

Tribal Media

The Student News Site of Dyer County School High School

Tribal Media

Literary Corner

Not A Simple Change

Not A Simple Change

To change your attitude you must first understand how it’s formed or how it impacts your life; whether that’s positively or negatively. Behavior doesn’t change overnight, it may take weeks, months, or even years. Your attitude is linked to emotional or hurtful past experiences which reveals a trigger/reaction. Those living with trauma tend to have a defensive attitude. According to a director of the Mental Health Association of Nassau County, “People who experience this may want to change.” However, Thinking that change happens overnight is the leading cause of failure in becoming a better individual. Trying to change before you’re ready will also lead to failure. There are five stages of change: pre-contemplation, contemplation, Preparation, Action, and Maintenance. 


The precontemplation stage represents people who don’t think seriously about changing themselves. In this stage, people are more likely to defend their current bad habits and are blindsided to not see a problem. People in the precontemplation stage are mostly defensive toward others if they are met with pressure to change. A strategy to help those in the precontemplation stage is to express concern for the risk associated with their negative behaviors. 

Characteristics: denial or ignorance of the problem. 

Strategies: Rethink your behavior and Analyze your actions.


The contemplation stage represents people who become aware that a problem exists within their behaviors. People in this stage express a desire to overcome but haven’t committed to taking action. This stage is prone to returning to a former behavior though what may be preventing them from change is known. Most people never make it past the contemplation stage. 

Characteristics: Ambivalence and conflicted emotions

Strategies: Identify barriers to change and confirm readiness/ change


The Preparation stage reveals those making small changes to their behaviors. This stage is filled with a motivation/determination to change. Individuals modify their beginning behaviors or environment to change an overall problem they are experiencing. This stage involves taking time and energy from the individual seeking change. This stage is to prevent relapse though, for addictive behaviors this stage can be extended longer than six months. 

Characteristics: Experimenting with small changes and collecting information about change

Strategies: Write down goals and prepare a plan of action


The action stage reveals that the individual physically experienced a change, This stage takes less than six months. The action stage improves an individual’s confidence and they tend to believe they can continue this journey of change. Those in this stage take action toward achieving a goal and in return gain reinforcement for their progress. 

Characteristics: Direct action toward a goal

Strategies: Reward your successes and seek out support


The Maintenance stage, also known as the last stage, reminds individuals of how much progress they have made. People in this stage acquire new skills to avoid relapse. Individuals in the maintenance stage continue their new positive behaviors for at least six months. Of course, there are setbacks in this stage however, after going through the stages individuals have more confidence in themselves to break through said setbacks. 

Characteristics: Avoiding temptation and maintenance of the new behavior

Strategies: Develop coping strategies for temptation and remember to reward yourself


The five stages of change are to form an outline for those who may or may not want to change. These stages are set to help individuals understand where they may be in their mindset to change.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Hannah Baker, Writer
I'm a senior at Dyer County High School. I plan to attend UT Martin after graduation.

Comments (0)

All Tribal Media Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *