“At least you’re aware….”
A common phrase I’ve heard at times when expressing self awareness of a disconcerting feeling and/or thought process but the friend I’m talking to doesn’t quite have the advice to help figure out what to do about it.
What good does self awareness do for habitual patterns of thought and action?
I have come to the conclusion that awareness is a key first step to action, to positive change.
I read a caption to an Instagram post last night that really hit home for me. “At the end of the day if you want change, it’s up to you and nobody else. Never settle for what others want or expect.” (Thank you Jared Bullock.)
The trend I am recognizing and want to change: the more unhappy and sad I become the more money I start spending on buying nice things for myself.
Bikinis, yoga wear, fancy bottled drinks from Lassens, haircuts…
Does it make me happier? Only sort of. Only for so long. It’s a short high. Then I remember how hard I am trying to pay off my credit card debt and that I am self-sabatoging/undoing all that hard work. (But this new bikini is super cute and my hair does look great.) Also, I want long lasting, healthy happiness.
So then the question is raised: If I know this about myself, what do I do about it now?
1.Start to recognize triggers. If you know when the tough feelings are coming you can better prepare yourself to react in a positive manner.
2. Come up with (and try!) alternative, less expensive, healthy and loving actions to take that make you feel good now and later. Drawing a picture, swinging at the playground, picking up trash on the beach…
3.Check in with yourself about what you just tried. Feel better now? Is this something you will still feel good about later or will this be a regret?
4. Change whatever it is making you think, act, speak, feel in ways that do not serve you for the better. This is the most important step. It can go anywhere between steps 1-3. Making intentional choices to better your quality of life is where the much of the power lies.
So I leave you this day with another Instagram caption read that made me (is still making me) think deeper…
“Watch your thoughts; they become your words. Watch your words; they become your actions. Watch your actions; they become your habits. Watch your habits; they become your character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.” (Thank you @gypsyon_)