Of course, Alex’s post yesterday was a disappointment to me. His announcement hardens intention. But given my philosophy, there is little for me do do but to accept his plan to leave and support it to the best of my ability.
Readiness refers to how likely a person is to seek out knowledge and participate in behavior change, and Alex is clearly not ready for what this place—and I—have to teach him. In the three months that he has been here, Alex has never explored the property nor (to the best of my knowledge) left the vicinity of the house except to pay a visit to the neighbors’. Whereas we spoke frequently upon his arrival, this ceased around the time that he began to spend hours of time on the phone each day and night with a young girl who has become his exclusive counsel.
Individuals go through various stages in order to adopt or maintain new behaviors. According to a website I consulted, in the pre-contemplative stage, the person is generally not aware of a problem or not ready to act. In the contemplative stage, the person is thinking about a change, but is not yet taking action. In the action stage, the person adopts a behavior change and is practicing it. In the maintenance stage, the person retains the new behavior as a result of reinforcement. In the last stage, the behavior is part of the individual’s lifestyle and is no longer seen as a change that needs attention or reinforcement.
Interventions work best if they match a person’s state of readiness. For example, if a subject is not even aware of a problem or its consequences, teaching should be directed toward raising awareness of the need for behavior change before any other learning can take place.
Readiness implies a degree of concentration and eagerness. Individuals learn best when they are physically, mentally, and emotionally ready to learn, and do not learn well if they see no reason for learning. Getting people ready to learn, creating interest by showing the value of the subject matter, and providing continuous mental or physical challenge, is usually the mentor’s responsibility. If the mentee has a strong purpose, a clear objective, and a definite reason for learning something, he makes more progress than if he lacks motivation. In other words, when learners are ready to learn, they meet the mentor at least halfway.
Alex appears to believe that he already has learned most of what is relevant to his personal situation. He doesn’t yet know what he doesn’t know. Give him time.
Groove of the Day