“In essence, if we want to direct our lives, we must take control of our consistent actions. It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives, but what we do consistently” – Tony Robbins
In Psychology there is a term called Dual-Process. It’s the idea that our behavior and actions are only conscious to us a small part of the time; the majority of our decisions being reactive. The Dual-Process model shows that all decisions are influenced be either a “reflective” (intentional, though out) or an “automatic” (subconscious, impulsive) response.
Simply put, most tasks you perform are automatic. Actions such as getting dressed, eating, commuting. We need these on a day to day basis. Automatic responses clear the way for the reflective responses, the decisions that require us to think before we act. The goal is to create as many positive automatic responses as possible and climate ones that are negative or unhealthy.
All automatic responses begin as a reflective ones; but intentionally creating positive automatic responses can be difficult. Often, when when you make the decision to to something productive, a fast familiar automatic response kicks in, making it more difficult to be productive. For instance, if you have decided that you are going to start reading in the afternoons, the automatic response of turning on the TV as soon as you get home is going to resist against the positive decision of reading. If you have decided to stop at the grocery store and buy fresh healthy ingredients to start cooking at home, your automatic response may be to resist the idea of spending time grocery shopping and cooking; instead you might be tempted to get fast food.
The key to starting a positive automatic response is to notice which behaviors are already automatic and evaluate which ones need to be removed or changed. When you have found a particular automatic response to be negative, try to determine what causes the response to initiate. If you have the tendency to daily go to a particular bar or fast food restaurant because the establishment is on your way home from work, take a different route home to help foster a new behavior.
In a previous blog post have offered some behaviors worth looking into changing. Remember, it’s the small things that we do on a daily basis that will determine the outcome of our life.
Rogelio H. Charles