One question that arises often in practice is “Why do I keep making the same mistakes?”

The question that could trigger us to think outside the box is “How does it serve you to keep making mistakes?” “What is the payoff?”

This requires a pen, paper, and sitting down HONESTLY and writing a list of what you gain from making mistakes or whatever your rut is.

You can make a list for one of your addictions, habits, and/or neediness’ i.e. a behaviour you are driven to do. Identify something that you are compelled to do and cannot stop doing but would like to have a choice to do or not to do.

Then make a list of what you gain from this behaviour. What is the payoff every time you   behave in this way.

For example, one client used over-eating as an example.  She began to write the list of what she gains by over-eating, such as:“Comfort” “Love”, “Importance”, “Calm” “Relaxation” “Fun”, “Joy”, “Happiness”, “

Once you make your list look at it closely.  You can see  that the list is a list of what you lack.

Next re-experience your driven behaviour, feel it as though you are doing it right now and then feel everything you gain from it, as in the example: love, comfort, importance. Really live the driven behaviour, how you cannot stop it and then really feel what you gain from the behaviour: such as love, comfort and so forth.

Now you should see that your  driven behaviour is dishonest and your addiction-acknowledge this out loud to yourself.

At this point just seeing that our driven behaviours are supplying us with something believe we lack shifts our awareness. We shift from thinking we are just helpless victims of our addictions to seeing that we are fulfilling a goal that undermines us in the end. Of course there are many other goals we have I look forward to hearing the goals you have found that you are addicted to achieving.

2 thoughts on “Exercises

  1. Great article, thanks to Eloise for posting it on facebook.

    An exercise that gets people to look at why they repeat the same behaviour over and over again.

    Either they need to change their behaviour OR acknowledge that it is what they do and are ‘happy’ to continue (hence won’t complain about it ever again!) At least it gives the rest of us some peace and quiet 😉

    The definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results [Einstein]

    Bobby 🙂

    • Hi Bobby,

      Thank you for your post.
      Just a little note:
      We cannot actually just change our behaviour, that in itself has us winding up hitting our heads against a brick wall trying to change our behaviour. Once we see what has been fueling our behaviour then it just “stops”. The insanity we so often experience is trying to change behaviours that we cannot change because the root of it is still there hurting us.

      Just seeing what we never saw before seems a miraculous but “seeing” is transformational in nature. What we cannot see drives us to do things that are repetitive and addictive. We no longer have choice whilst the behaviour drives us. The problem is not the behaviour. The behaviour is the distraction from the problem. The behaviour keeps us looking in the wrong places for the solution. Once we find a way to trick the distractions or better yet the “defence mechanisms” then we can get to the root or the wound that we have been protecting all along.

      Once we see the wound then it cannot hurt us any longer. The wound finally has out attention and can be lived into rather than kept deeply hidden from sight trying to get our attention. The wound just wants to be seen and heard. We spend oodles of time trying to just shut it through coping mechanisms up creating which only amplifies the internal cries for help.

      Hope that helps

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