For inner change, momentum matters more than movement

When we strive to improve ourselves, we may feel disheartened, “There are so many things wrong with me. Even if I improve, the improvement is so tiny. What difference will it make?”

For inner change, how much positive change we make is not as defining as how many positive impressions we make in our mind. Our actions result not just from our conscious intentions but also from the subconscious impressions present in our mind. 

Whenever we do any action, it forms within us a corresponding impression. And this impression impels us to repeat that action. The more we repeat the action, the deeper the impression becomes and the stronger it impels us to repeat that action. If we create an impression for a positive activity, even if in a small quantity, that impression will create a momentum for inner change. That momentum will eventually move us much further on the path to inner change than one large movement. Pertinently, the Bhagavad-gita (06.25) urges us to seek inner change by gradually, steadily focusing our mind on higher spiritual reality. 

Suppose we want to read a sacred text such as the Bhagavad-gita. We may resolve to read the whole Gita during a vacation. If we succeed, that’s great. Even if we don’t – and even if we do – what will most spiritualize our consciousness is not just a one-time reading of the Gita but the habit of regularly reading the Gita. If we strive to read the Gita daily, even if it be just a verse daily, that repetition will create a momentum for regular scriptural study which will transform us significantly. 

Therefore, while seeking inner change, when we learn to focus on momentum rather than movement, we will make positive changes that may not be sensational but will be substantial and sustainable.  

Think it over:

  • What do our actions result from?
  • How can small changes make a big difference?
  • Is seeking sensational change distracting you from sustainable change? How can you rectify that?


06.26 Gradually, step by step, one should become situated in trance by means of intelligence sustained by full conviction, and thus the mind should be fixed on the Self alone and should think of nothing else.

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As long as we don’t mine under the mind, the mind will undermine us
Those who underestimate their mind undermine their intelligence
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