Wright Foundation | August 12, 2014

Breaking Bad Habits with Positive Thinking

Breaking bad habits is more than you think. Bad habits are a function of how you see yourself and how you see your world – they’re a function of how you think about yourself and how you think about your world. Breaking bad habits does require positive thinking but also requires positive visioning and feeling. Most bad habits become bad habits because we have not been able to think positively about what we are doing. Let’s say we have a bad habit of binging, and we criticize ourselves for binging on food. We’re overweight and we would like to lose 15 maybe 50 pounds. We feel bad about ourselves for over eating but we continue to over eat.

Positive thinking by itself isn’t sufficient; we need to learn to have positive visioning to break bad habits.

We also need to have a deep understanding of the yearning that is underneath the overeating. When we yearn for things like love and yearn to have people to see us as good people, we tend to get nervous; we’re afraid of rejection so we tell ourselves to think positively. Yet, what’s happening is that we’re imagining and feeling rejection. Positive thinking is also a matter of positive feeling. It’s important to notice that we feel bad and we’re eating. What is the eating doing? What is the positive intent of the eating? It’s to numb us and put away the feelings of hurt that we already have imagined and don’t even recognize. We just want to get away at the end of the day, that’s the time most people over eat. They go to the refrigerator when they don’t know what else to do.

We may try positive thinking but that is not enough. Maybe what we’re really hungry for isn’t food. We need to do a number of things like recognize our deeper yearning. We also need to recognize stinking thinking so we can develop positive thinking, which requires visioning, seeing ourselves the way we want, talking to ourselves the way we want, and feeling the way we want. Positive thinking is all three of those. Breaking bad habits may require coaching, and positive thinking alone may not work. If you can’t apply what we’re talking about effectively then consider getting a coach.