Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Healthier Inner Dialogue - Habits

Sometimes I find that I respond badly to a situation entirely out of habit and I wonder how I can stop doing so. For example, I have a hard time resisting the snappy comeback, no matter how inappropriate or unkind it might be.

I'm not sure where this started, but I can tell you that it is definitely ingrained - a habit. My mind thinks quickly, my mouth works even faster, but my filter is tremendously slow. Yep. Not really an optimal situation.

So, what's a gal to do?

Replace the bad habit with something else. Well, that sounds easy doesn't it? So, I'll just substitute my witty little retort with something that is not offensive. I decided to choose 'oh my'. It fits as a response to most things. Let's see how it could work:

The Comment: We all know that global warming is a farce and scientists have even proven that it's a lie.
What I want to say: I think what we all know is that you are a horse's ass.
What I do say: Oh my, that's an interesting viewpoint. (smile)

The Comment (to a deli clerk): Gimme a half a pound of ham.
What I want to say: I'll 'give you' a kick to the groin if you can't find your manners.
What I do say: Oh my (under my breath).

The Comment: I'm exhausted, I'm going to head off for a nap.
What I want to say: Whoa, yes, watching me working my butt off must have tired you out.
What I do say: Oh my, yes, you must be so tired. Have a good sleep.

Hmmm,...yes, I can totally see this working. It's not nearly as satisfying to be sure, but it's also not nearly as regretful either. Maybe a genuine trade-off?

Do you struggle with bad habits? What techniques have you used to try to combat them?


Magic Love Crow said...

I can't stop laughing Terry! LOL! Seriously, I am even laughing now! LOL! I like your "what I want to say comments"! They are truthful ;o) You sound like my mom! LOL! And, she has gotten into trouble! LOL! For me, I have learned to be quiet and I smile ;o) It's hard!!! The one bad habit I have is biting my nails! Ugggg! They get to a nice length and then I start biting again, like a rabbit!!! LOL!
Big Hugs ;o)

Tina Bradley said...

I'm smiling as I know we ALL have those thoughts (what we'd like to say versus what we actually say). I will admit to having "gone" there in terms of saying what I'm thinking--a time or two (smile). I think it's an issue of mindfulness--putting space between the thought and action. Problem is, it's not always easy to do. I'm better at it than I was at one point in my life, though--no doubt. :) T.

Mindy said...

I'm pretty certain that my Debbie Downer, snappy attitude is habit now, as well. My snotty remarks are just second nature. It's at the point now, where saying something nice hurts. I know, it's almost funny. But I have to force a sorry, or a thank you, or anything positive. If I don't force myself to immediately blurt it out, I just can't say it. What the eff is that?! Who have I become that saying please takes effort? And I'm not talking about strangers. I'm very nice and cordial to them. So I know it's in me. And it isn't work with them, either. It's a natural reaction. Okay, who am I kidding. I'm a raging bleep to my husband the majority of the time, and it's a wonder he hasn't punched me in my throat by now. There. I said it. I hate it and I'm constantly thinking about how I don't want to be that way, but I haven't done anything to change it. He's so easy going and mellow and nothing bothers him. And I freak out over a throw pillow that's sitting crooked. Or if I'm exhausted or stressed out or just having a rough day, instead of telling him why and talking to him like a human when he asks, I snap some smart ass remark about socks on the floor and storm off. Dude. I'm seriously feeling crazytown right about now. Maybe we should join crazytown anonymous together. I hear they serve wine. And cheese.