We should not and absolutely do not want to think about something - and that is precisely why we constantly think about it all the time. This is not only impractical when it comes to getting rid of annoying-cherished habits.


Bad habits

With the habits it would be harmless. For example, “Today I won't think about cigarettes all day!” or “Today I don’t keep staring at my sexy colleague’s back.” - if we do, the consequences are still relatively manageable.

Anyone who suffers from insomnia and keeps saying to himself in bed in the evening "Now I won't think about my sleep problem, I'll just go to sleep" - you will achieve exactly the opposite of that. This is pretty for sure.

Mental diseases

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But one also tries to treat tangible mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety disorders by breaking up previous thought patterns. But that only works to a limited extent.

Because the more you instill in the patient, “It's best not to think about XY”, the more powerfully this thought hovers in their unconscious - and at some point, the stronger its way into consciousness. With dire consequences.

The ironic stranglehold

The ironic processes, both small and large, have us firmly in their ironic Hand. So be careful when you Problems want to solve by “simply” suppressing a thought or action.

If you want to gain more mental control over yourself, you can use the following two insights for yourself: First, the “focused distraction” helps. Determine a certain thing from the start, which you always think of immediately when the “bad” thought arises.

Avoid backfilling

Of course, the distracting thought should not come from the undesirable category: "Instead of black chocolate, I'm just thinking of white chocolate." It works better like this: Chocolate = Eiffel Tower. In this way you at least avoid more serious relapses.

For another, you can feel better mentally check, the more capacity in your Brain is currently free. If you want to change a trait, don't necessarily try it when your brain is otherwise particularly busy.

Do not achieve the opposite

If you are particularly stressed at work, running in a marathon, or your partner or the jackhammer on the construction site next door just annoying, you risk not only that it will not work - so you would have nothing to lose.

You risk getting the exact opposite of what you want: ending up even more Internet surf the web, eat more peanut flips, get mad at your sister more often.

Take the pressure out

“It's not a good time to start dieting right now,” so it's not just an excuse. At least not always. However, if you find that it's never a good time for something you want to achieve, it can be worthwhile to start somewhere else:

At the stress sources, which at first glance do not really have anything to do with the property you want to get rid of. So we take the pressure out: Now think again of a purple cow. All day long.

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