I had a number of responses to my What Bugs You post, including several from people who get stuck in unhelpful patterns or habits. The woman who stays in an abusive marriage, too afraid to break free. The person who flounders in a cycle of negativity, unable to let go, when someone has upset them. The lady who overthinks worries, rather than thinking them through constructively to reach a resolution.
I guess we all have things we do that are repeating patterns and that do us no good. But how do we break out of this destructive cycle? How do we become the driver of our lives rather than the passenger?
Doing things differently is a challenge. If it wasn’t, we’d have achieved it years ago! But it is not impossible. It just takes time and effort. The great thing is, if you already notice that you are doing something unhelpful, you have already started on the road to changing.
To take you further on that journey to change, identify where it is you’re heading. Having a clear goal helps you get there, just as knowing where you’re going in your car makes a difference to whether you actually arrive!
For the lady in the abusive marriage, she may want the courage to stand up to her husband, or to pack her bags and move somewhere new, or to share with her grown-up children the reality of her marriage. If she can imagine all this, including having the bravery to carry it through, she opens up the possibility that it will happen. Better still, if she can recall a time when she did actually feel that strength and courage to carry through a positive change, she can arm herself with the inner resource she needs. And she will have the strength to ask for the help she needs to support her through her change.
For the lady stuck in a cycle of negativity, she might wish to experience a real sense of letting go, of leaving the upset to the universe, and re-engage with her positive, active self. She may build a picture in her mind’s eye of herself making and maintaining good relationships, dealing with any upset constructively and respectfully, or letting it go.
For the person stuck in endless worrying, she might see herself using her skills in problem-solving to approach her concerns in a proactive way. She’ll imagine finding solutions, carrying out any required actions to implement her solution, and then moving on. She may imagine the difference this will make to her and her life, and use this to motivate her to positive action rather than endless fretting.
But once you know what you want, how do you then implement that change?
Becoming the driver rather than the passenger of your life
To take positive action, you may need to call on your courage and to challenge any negative assumptions that are getting in the way of change. Some questions you might ask yourself:
What am I assuming that’s getting in the way?
Am I taking responsibility for myself and using my power to take care of myself properly?
What if I was my best here and had all the courage I need?
What would be an appropriate, adult response?
What do I need to do?
Then it’s up to you to take action. To be the driver of your life rather than the passenger. To notice when you are not taking the action you need to take. Then, instead of giving yourself a hard time, re-engage with your powerful self so you do make some positive changes.
You can do this. But it will take repeated effort.
Are you ready for the challenge?
Get in touch for a chat if you think I may be able to help you become the driver rather than the passenger of your life. It will be great to hear from you!