Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Behaviour Diet: 5 Steps to Shedding Those Unwanted Actions And Thoughts

A wise person once told me that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. So if you're looking to stop the insanity and shed a few unwanted types of behaviour, then take note of this 5-step program. Step-by-step, you'll surely get the results you're looking for!

The first step, in some cases, can be the hardest step to achieve, which is determining what behaviour it is that you'd like to change. The problem is that we don't always conciously realize we're doing something, and if we don't know that we're doing what we're doing, then we can't change our behaviour. So let's just say, for example, that you want to stop using the word "like" ten times in every sentence, then the first step would be to realize that you say the word "like" ten times in every sentence. The reaction you have at this point towards your behaviour is probably something along the lines of you blurting out a sentence, and then getting frustrated because you realized in hindsight that you just did what you didn't want to do. Relax! You're only at step one!

The second step can actually be a more frustrating step than the first one. During this step, you conciously realize that you'd like to change what you're doing, and you'll realize that you're doing what you don't want to be doing once you're done doing it. An example might be needed here. Let's continue with our previous example of wanting to stop using the word "like" ten times in every sentence. What happens during the second step with this example is that you realize you're saying the word "like" right after it has come out of your mouth. Don't fret, though, because you're only a few steps away from completing your diet!

The third step shows that you are gradually shedding the unwanted behaviour. Continuing on with our example, what happens during the third step is that you realize you're cheating on your diet DURING the actual act, ie while the word "like" is coming out of your mouth. So what happens here is that you stop yourself mid-word, turning "like" to "li...". Instead of being angry at yourself for not getting rid of the bad behaviour completely, you should be proud that you are halfway to your goal, so keep up the good work!

During the fourth step, you are conciously focusing on what you are doing and/or saying at all times. This means that BEFORE you cheat and say what you don't want to say, you think about the sentence about to pop out of your mouth, and then it comes out with no "like" at all (unless you mean the verb "to like", or if you're comparing one thing to another). You know what this means? That you're practically home free!

The fifth and final step is the actual maitenance of your diet. One step at a time, you've attempted to get rid of some kind of unwanted behaviour, and at this stage, you have completely slimmed down. It becomes easier and easier to not do what you don't want to do without even having to think about it.

On that note, I hope that my 5-step diet will help you find the path of least insanity.
For a free brochure, please contact me at 1-INSANE-4-LIFE. Long distance charges may apply.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Ready, Set, Commit

Historically, and stereotypically, speaking, men have been known to be the commitment-phobic gender. Innumerable women have stood by patiently, waiting for the moment when their partners felt ready to take the relationship to the next level, whatever that level may be. This phobia seems to be made up of a group lingering fears ranging from the fear of what's ahead in your life (do you really want to include someone in your life to the point that you are making decisions together instead of having the freedom of independence), to the fear of what is yet to be discovered about your partner (who knows what skeletons might be locked up in that closet), to the fear of giving more importance to your relationship with one person when there might, in fact, be someone out there better suited and more worthy of being with you (so many people, so little time), to the fear of what you might become with the influence of who you're with (be who you want to be, do what you want to do, who needs the peer pressure).

Slowly, but surely, though, there is a commitment revolution stirring. In this day and age where women are evolving and becoming more equal to men in the eyes of society, they find themselves holding a few more cards in their hands. There's an interesting shift going on, where women are throwing their conventional ideals to the wind and deciding to take a more male approach to relationships. It's almost as if the I'm-not-ready-for-a-commitment virus has spread to the previously always-ready-for-a-commitment gender.

Here's where it gets to be a bit more confusing, at least for men. Let's look at this as a comparison. Before: the majority of women were supposed to be ready to commit at the drop of a hat, the question always being whether their men were ready to make things more serious. After: even when the man feels ready to commit, the woman now has the possibility of taking her time to decide on if she is ready to take the next step with her male companion of the moment.

It makes you wonder if the world has gone mad, really. How could things get so out-of-hand? It's incomprehensible. It's unexpected. (It's amusing, actually.)

In a way, it's unbalancing the triangular theory of love, where the combination of intimacy, passion, and commitment characterizes the type of love being experienced in a relationship. Could it be that women were all looking to achieve the highest form of love, consummate love, the love that includes giving 100% intimacy, 100% passion, and 100% commitment to your partner, and are now content with sharing their passion and intimacy without any commitment at all?

I guess it's a theory. In reality, it's a very plausible theory if you ask me. But where exactly does that leave me? Probably in the same place as many other women out there who are now confused with their new-found freedom, stuck in the middle of the love triangle of intimacy, passion, and commitment, questioning their roles, old and new, and looking ahead to a green light along an unknown, foggy road.