It’s almost may 2020 and thanks to this pandemic the plans and the things you wanted to achieve for this year might have to be postponed and it may lead you to believe it is a bad thing, but is it? This is the perfect time to reflect upon what you say you want because, all things considered, maybe what you want is, how should I say it?… Not really good for you.
Media, peers, self help books and gurus keep making you go after what you want. However, should you? If you live your life on the basis of “what do I want to do?”,
can you confidently tell me that you would pick the best option for you.
My point is this, if you spend too much time and effort going after what you want, you might be neglecting what is really good and beneficial for you both in long term goals and every day activities. What I mean is you might be wrong about what you want, but you are hardly ever wrong about what would be good for you. And you know it.
What you want
Eating junk food
What would be good
Eating healthy food
Why is that? To make my point even clearer I have to talk about your brain, let’s remember that your brain is inclined to take the most pleasurable and accessible choice available which often times is not the best one.
Bear with me here, take PROCRASTINATION, you procrastinate because if your brain has to choose between doing something hard (work, exercise, reading, studying, writing) and something pleasurable (binging, Netflix, sleeping, social media scrolling, over spending) what do you think your brain is going to choose?
10 out of 10 times it will choose to do the pleasurable thing and that is usually the outcome under the light of the question “What do I want?”. As I stated before, Going after what you want might lead you into a path that could be catastrophic down the road, too many days going after what you want might leave you broke, ignorant, lonely and out of shape.
What to do about it?
1. Catch yourself red-handed
The first thing is to create self awareness, by catching yourself avoiding the good stuff, the real good stuff, you can start to be more inclined to face it rather than avoid it.
2. Add some more questions
When you catch yourself doing something that you want rather than something that is good for you ask yourself these questions Is this really the best thing that I could do with myself right now? How is what I’m doing right now helping me build that better future I want? What could I be doing that’s better for me than this? These questions might not take you into doing something productive and good for you right away but they will plant the thoughts and mental processes that will.
3. Have a plan B ready
For every activity that you know you shouldn’t be doing have another that is actually better for you ready, so you don’t have to think just execute. Have a bag of carrot sticks ready in the fridge so when you want to go for chips you just go to the fridge and fetch the carrots instead.
4. Learn to negotiate with yourself
The idea is to make each a little bit better than the last or at least not worse because that would be a stupid day. Start balancing out the Want’s Vs the Good for you’s and try to tip the scale just a little bit more on the side of what is good. It will pay off in the near future.
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