What are bad habits?
Bad habits are patterns of behaviors that don’t make us happy any longer.
We start doing a behaviour because when we started it, it made us feel better.
The behaviour can be biting our nails, pulling our hair, cracking our knuckles or doing things we know make us unhealthy: overeating ‘junk’ foods, drinking too much alcohol, smoking or any other compulsive behaviour.
Let’s take Annie who bights her nails. Annie began biting her nails when she was 5, when her parents were breaking up. Annie started to bight her nails when she was stressed about the split and felt powerless. She found some relief from her stress from biting her nails. Somehow it distracted her for a short time from her stressful situation.
Fast forward to today. Annie’s a successful executive who is in charge of a company. She feels embarrassed about the fact that she still bights her nails (which anyone looking at her hands can see). Despite feeling powerful in other areas of her life, Annie seems powerless to give up biting her nails. Instead of relieving stress, biting her nails is now a source of stress. So, why doesn’t she just stop doing it?
Why are may habits so hard to break?
Annie consciously would like to stop biting her nails. She tries to use her willpower to stop. Yet, the much larger part of her mind around 85%, her subconscious mind, still thinks that biting her nails helps to relieve stress. When she concentrates on not biting her nails, she can stop herself from doing it. Yet, as soon as she isn’t paying attention and is stressed she unconsciously goes back to biting her nails. She tried many things to stop the habit, from painting her finger nails with chili polish and as soon a the taste was gone, she was back to her old habit.
As long as she subconscious thinks that biting her nails will relieve her stress, she will keep biting them. Just like most of us who have bad habits, we find ourselves doing them again and again, when we stop being vigilant about stopping. And it’s a hard thing to be vigilant all of the time. In fact it takes a great deal of energy to be on guard all the time to stop a bad habit. Annie had decided that biting her nails was her lot in life and she gave up trying to stop and made jokes about it instead.
Time to reprogram the mind. It’s not as hard as you might think.
The good news is, that it is not very difficult to re-program the mind to stopping a bad habit for good. In fact, it can take only one or two sessions to reprogram the subconscious mind through hypnosis and Neuro Linguistic Programming and the habit can be gone forever.
It’s important to make sure you have other strategies to manage stress that don’t involve your bad habit, so you don’t substitute one bad habit for another. In Annie’s case we don’t want her to stop biting her nails and then start drinking alcohol to manage her stress.
Giving up a bad habit is not hard, what might take a little time is to be in touch with all the benefits that you get from the habit and be sure to replace that with something you prefer, consciously and then in hypnosis introduce the same ideas the subconscious, so that you are now of one mind about the habit and quit the old one and replace it with a desirable habit instead.
If you have any questions about habits and breaking habits, please feel free to ring Briar or Luigi and we will be happy to answer those questions.
Over the last 15 months Luigi Pameijer & Briar Willard have been holding something that they call ‘The Universal Healing Circle’ in Brisbane, Australia.
It all started when a friend overseas asked them to hold weekly prayers for the health of a young woman in her 20s who was suffering from an inoperable brain tumor.
After the first private session Briar and Luigi thought that they could take the idea of healing a step further and invite others to join in this prayer and meditation for healing. Given the skills of both Luigi and Briar have, it was decided to do a deep guided meditation for healing and each person would have their own experience.
This program of the Universal Healing Circle was held weekly for many months. Some evenings there have been as many as 20 attending and other times only 2 guests. Regardless, they are happy to hold the UHC. They realize this is something that they can do and enjoy to contribute to others.
Luigi is the primary facilitator of the healing process. He has modified the guided meditation from time to time, though it is still very much in alignment with where it was when they started back in January of 2012
Almost all participants have stated how ‘peaceful’ they feel after the mediation and how much clearer their minds were for the weeks after. They have received comments from university students who said that they have improved their studies and abilities at university, after the sessions.
They also have other therapists who attend regularly and tell them that they have improved focus and greater ability for assertiveness in their own lives.
The meditation is very enchanting and even Luigi finds that he is also transported by the meditation as he is speaking. He loses the sense of time during the session.
These session generally take about 35 to 45 minutes in meditation. In a very relaxed way the group often has a chat over a cup of tea after the healing and before everyone goes home.
If you would like to attend one of these evenings please contact Briar and Luigi by email.
Places are limited so contact them, so that they can let you know if there is room at that session.
Email: Universalhealingcircle at gmail.com
It may seem strange to you that I love conflict, yet I do. That is because I have found that healthy conflicts are the best way to have fulfilling relationships both for myself and for the couples that I see in counseling.
What I mean by conflict is when a person expresses their dissatisfaction with the way something is. It can be about behaviors and feelings or about the concrete things, like the location of a fence between neighbors.
Without conflict, we would never know how the other person felt and that their needs were being neglected or even violated. We can live with someone for years and believe that we know them and yet, until we have a conflict we would never challenge the belief that they felt as we do.
Let me give you a short story as an example.
I was travelling across the US with a friend of mine. After a couple of weeks travelling together, each time we would eat a loaf of bread he would make a point of saying “I like the ends” and eat them. I was annoyed because I kept the ends of the bread to keep the loaf from drying out. Finally, I said that I didn’t mind the ends either! He laughed mockingly and said that he had watched me for over a month and that I would eat every other piece of bread before I would eat the end pieces. So obviously I hated the ends of the bread! Him saying this gave me an opportunity to explain how I really felt about the bread drying out.
Without that conflict we could have lived together for years without understanding one another. This is a small insignificant issue but it can show us how easy it is to assume that we understand the motivations of another and that more time together would not have brought more understanding.
When people express themselves through conflict, that is the point when healthy changes can be made which can actually improve relationships, in the long run. In any long-term relationships the absence of conflict demonstrates that one or both parties are not fully asking for their needs to be met. It’s impossible to guess all of the other person’s needs and meet them, without some discussion, usually as the result of some conflict. Whether it is from fear of conflict or lack of self-esteem, many people flee conflict and live with things that they hate.
That may sound strong, but many people never speak up about what their partners or neighbors are doing and that they find ugly or even dangerous because they don’t want any conflict. Or they may be hurt and break off a friendship based on a misunderstanding that never got resolved because they avoided the conflict of speaking up.
I have lived in 5 different countries and I speak 3 languages. I have also worked with people as a Counselor or Life Coach and Therapist for over 25 years. In my experience over 80% of hurt feelings are due to misunderstandings between people. If the hurt person was to express their hurt and risk conflict about what was said or done, the other would have an opportunity to explain what was really meant! I wonder how many broken relationships could have been saved just by speaking up?
I have found that conflict is the best indicator of where to start work with relationships and individuals. The absence of healthy conflict is a sign that healing is required. There is some pain associated with speaking up. You may gasp at the words healthy and conflict being in the same breath or sentence, yet I think that healthy conflict is the sign of a healthy relationship.
So, how do I have healthy conflicts?
· It’s about being fair to all parties. Make sure both people get to have their say without criticism or interruptions. This is the hard part for some, they can’t seem to listen to the conflict without interrupting.
· It’s about bringing light to the problem so that both can see and understand one another.
· Being hard on the problem and soft on the person. The problem is the problem, not the person. Remember to describe the problem as separate from the person. They are not the problem, the behavior that they do is.
· It’s about getting help from an impartial third-party to help you resolve your conflicts that you are stuck in.
Now you know why I love conflicts and believe that we should have more not less of them. It’s not the number of conflicts that are the problem it’s the lack of skill in having healthy conflicts that causes the problems.
I hope that I can get a chance to help you with your conflicts.
Contact me if you are interested in getting solutions to issues that have been troubling you for a long time or are keeping you up at night. I provide Life Coaching, Business Coaching Counseling and Family or Business Constellations. Our clinic is Making Connections Qld, situated in Brisbane, Queensland Australia. Our web page is http://makingconnections.com.au/
Go for a breakthrough in understanding so that you can learn how to resolve your personal and relationship issues based on new insights. I’ve been working with people for over 25 years. I also work by phone and over Skype. Come see me on my website and give me a call so we can help you get peace of mind now.
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