It isn't hard to find someone who wouldn't like to make a change
in their life. I have asked people, "If you could make one change in your
life, what would it be?" Most people have little hesitation about what
would make that list. Responses vary from their physical condition to
particular events or decisions of their past.
In part one of two, I described the lifecycle of behavior which follows
a certain progression that reinforces itself. Simply stated, feelings become
thoughts, thoughts become beliefs, beliefs become values, values become
actions, actions become consequences and consequences become feelings.
Here are a few tips on impacting that cycle to make a difference.
1. When a certain negative feeling, belief or action arises, combine a physical response to your decision to go in a different way. For example, if you are feeling
depressed, clap your hands together (just once is all you need), dispute the
feeling out loud or shout “that’s not true” or “not this time” and do something
like take a walk immediately.
The brain loves to multi-task and when you combine a physical action with a decision, the choice will be far more effective. Some people actually wear a rubber band on their wrist and when a negative thought or temptation comes, they snap and move to another place physically and mentally.
2. Music can also be a powerful tool as it brings into the battle two concepts of brain function. It activates the physical (hearing) as well as emotional (artistic).
If you sing along, you further add another element of taking the brain on the
3. Benevolence or acts of charity, is another weapon against negativity. If you volunteer at the local food pantry, you might feel sad, but you will not feel depressed. By giving yourself (not talking about writing a check) to help others you open another area of your brain in a spiritual sense. This again causes a
multi-discipline component to come into play and take you out of the behavior
lifecycle and allow you to make more positive choices
Bottom line is when you feel helpless, it can be very crippling. When you take control, by combining a physical action with an intellectual decision it is very empowering.
Try these ideas and let me know how it worked. Let me know about other steps you have used that has been effective.