Overcoming harmful behaviours

May 18, 2022

Written by UJJI Team

Overcoming harmful behaviours

“If you do not pour water on your plant, what will happen? It will slowly wither and die. Our habits will also slowly wither and die away if we do not give them an opportunity to manifest. You need not fight to stop a habit. Just don’t allow it to repeat itself.”

— Sri S. Satchidananda

If things aren’t going well for you, even when you’re giving them your best shot and using the right channels, it’s because there probably are some items you need to knock off your list of behaviour. However, before looking for what to knock-off and whatnot, let’s look at what we can qualify as behaviour. A behaviour is a way of interacting with or reacting to a situation or stimulus. In a nutshell, it’s how you live your life because living your life is all about interacting with your surrounding environment. But, when the things you do or how you do them in response to situations pose threats to both your physical and mental health, such behaviours become harmful, and the list is endless.

What could be the cause?

One of the primary reasons people seek to adopt a harmful behaviour is reacting to negative emotions like stress, anger, frustration, etc., from situations that make one feel powerless and bored. Most of the time, people end up doing things they regret when they only wanted to “blow off some steam.” But then, it turns out that they end up igniting another fire of which they do not know until it is too late.

So, what then is the fix?

The upside to behaviour is that it isn’t the same as the habit, it is more on the conscious side, and you can easily spot it when it surfaces. It is only after repeating the behaviour for an extended period that it becomes a habit.

The fix starts with identifying what happened. Something must have happened, at one time, and triggered the need for that behaviour. You can begin from there; the realization that the situation and the emotions are long gone, but the action now turned habit lingers on. When it comes to behaviours or habits and how they affect our lifestyle, there are no “leaving the spaces blank.” A replacement is always the best option because you have subconsciously created avenues for exhibiting them.

Therefore, finding a counter-behaviour that isn’t harmful and replacing it with the identified behaviour will do the trick. You can also watch out for situations that trigger such action and refrain from it or anything related to it.

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