Hello and Welcome!
Following these steps to increase awareness and allowing creates space to respond effectively and change your behavior.
An easy way to begin is the Stop, Look, and Listen method.
Stop multitasking or whatever action in which you are involved that may split your attention or where you feel you are being pulled along a track in an habitual thinking/behaving way; Look, or pay attention by bringing your attention to the situation at hand, pay attention to the actions of others and yourself and how relevant these are to the whole of the situation; Listen to your inner voice and the style, tone, timber of your and the other’s voice. Stop look and listen is focus, see, and hear in the present moment, the now. This is a simple unambiguous phrase that brings you into mindfulness.
It is a simple way to interrupt habit-reactive firing of behavior. This method slows down your reactive-linking behavior. Through present moment refocusing of your attention you can gather information and then develop a response that meets the present moment situation.
This recovery process can be applied to any habit that has gone awry. What’s really great about this set of actions and behaviors is how they help in every instance when a habit has simply overtaken your life as the driver of your behavior rather than the mechanism of your comfort or alleviation of difficulty.
Here’s how to decipher if you are dealing with a habit reaction pattern.
- Check in with your senses and intuition. If you feel that the experience is familiar or a pattern then you may be participating in a habit reaction scenario. If you feel that you have trouble trusting that things can/will go well for you, then your early history of having to survive is coloring your current day choices/actions.
- If you have an immediate feeling of anger, like someone has crossed a boundary and your feeling is charged in that the level of emotion (intensity) doesn’t match the situation or boundary crossing, this is a sign that you have been triggered.
In this instance, proceed in your actions with thoughtfulness.
- Query yourself on whether your intense feeling is consistent with your overall experience of the person or the environment toward which you are feeling the intense reaction.
- Stop, look, and listen – think caution in proceeding.
- Invoke mindfulness and centered, present moment attention to the situation.
- Work against the pull of the groove into the habit reaction pattern.
This is how you can engage the a more balanced attitude. Focus is the key. If you are in danger, utilizing your reaction skills to get out of the situation is paramount. If you are not in danger but rather caught in a habit reaction pattern then focus your attention on what you want rather than what you fear as the best response.
Use mindfulness to re-view the circumstances in relation to your emotion. This is the stop, look, and listen component, it will help you identify whether this is danger or not. In example, if a stranger is doing something that feels dangerous allow your survivor reactions to move at lightning pace. If however, the situation is with a loving partner, or friend – you need to view your emotion within the context of the relationship in present-time and with clarity and genuineness.
Awareness, Breathe, Wait it out, and Reveal.
- The most difficult element of confronting a habit reaction pattern that is driving your behavior is the stopping part.
- If your car is out of control, you need to stop its forward movement – this requires first, a recognition that you have lost control of the car, and then second, an action to gain control.
- This awareness is key. Once you are aware you can begin to take back control of your thinking and behaving/actions.
Stop look and listen focuses you on increasing your awareness. Breathe, wait it out, and reveal focuses you on how and what to change. It requires a shift in how, and on what, you focus. It requires a re-view of yourself through a centered, mindful attention to yourself, your skills and limitations, what brings you joy and centers you in your best self.
Shifting perspective actually creates the power that you feel you have lost. It is a relaxation of the struggle to survive or fight and a gentle movement into the mindful, balanced living of life. Consider the simple action of relaxing in a hold, this action alone telegraphs to the holder to lighten his grip and causes laxity so that you can wiggle out of the stranglehold.
Lightening your grip, your need for habit reactive linking behavior allows you to move through situations and your environment in a mindful and relaxed way, still nimble in your attention and responses to act if necessary to a dangerous situation but not reactive, held or tight in your nature. in love and light, beth