Have you ever been trying to quit an unwanted habit e.g. to Quit Smoking , Stop Overeating, Stop Nail Biting or Quit Sugar and found yourself caught in an internal conflict where one part of you is saying “I shouldn’t be eating this/having this cigarette or ‘insert habit here’ while another part of you just carries on doing it?
It’s confusing and frustrating isn’t it? You’re so clear about wanting to quit, you’ve been through all the reasons, you’ve made your mind up and you direct all of your willpower at it, and yet…… there you are again doing exactly what you’ve decided you don’t want to do. Breaking a habit can become something of a personal Everest.
Why is this?
Our willpower works in conjunction with our cognition, it’s like a battery with a finite life. In addition to the limited battery life of our willpower, the other problem is that our cognition is operating on a delay several seconds behind our unconscious processing. By the time you have the thought “why am I doing this again!” Your unconscious mind has assessed the situation or circumstance that you’re in, has matched it to previous experiences and has already set what it deems to be an appropriate response in motion. The momentum has already built up considerable steam before your cognition tries to trigger willpower. Your willpower may have enough ‘battery charge’ to interrupt this process a few times, but chances are that its battery will go flat before the unconscious response has been retrained or decommissioned. This is why willpower alone is often insufficient to effect change.
The reason for this is simple. The unconscious will continue meeting what it perceives to be the need until a better alternative is provided to it. Simply trying to stop will not do it, understanding the purpose the habit is fulfilling and addressing that is the key.
The unconscious mind is quite simple in its matching process, for example if you have comforted yourself with chocolate or cigarettes your unconscious may interpret this to mean that avoiding your emotions works for you, so thereafter any fluctuation in emotion may lead to you finding yourself halfway through a block of chocolate or lighting one cigarette from another before you realise it.
Understanding your triggers is a good way of pre-empting this unconscious process, if you are aware of the circumstances that trigger your unwanted behaviour you can observe the point at which your unconscious tries to set the response it determines appropriate in motion. Then you can use the following 4 steps to interrupt it:
This process can take a little time to retrain the brain. Hypnotherapy can be used to fast-track the process and to break down the defence mechanisms that the subconscious may have put in place to protect its habituated responses. The unconscious mind is always working in what it believes is your best interest, so once it establishes a habit it won’t let it go until it’s very clear that the habit no longer serves a valid positive purpose for you. Hypnotherapy and EFT can help you process the emotions that may be keeping you stuck in old habituated patterns and unstick the most stubborn habit defences.
If you’d like to learn more about how I can help you Quit Smoking with Hypnotherapy or use Hypnotherapy for Weight Loss or to break any unwanted habit or behaviour that you would like to leave behind you please feel free to call me on 0435 923 817 or use the contact form on this page.
If you have any comments about reprogramming the unconscious mind please feel free to leave it in the comments below.
For the Best Hypnotherapy Melbourne has to offer ensure that the Therapist you choose is a member of an accredited association such as the Australian Hypnotherapy Association. Melbourne’s best Hypnotherapist options ensure that they are members and therefore demonstrate that they are appropriately trained, insured and governed by a code of ethics. Where the Hypnotherapist is an association member Private Health Insurance rebates may apply for participating health funds.
Georgina Mitchell was born in Ireland, moving to Australia in 1989. Georgina spent many years working in senior management in the Corporate world, before leaving to pursue her passion to become a Therapist.
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Please note as with all therapies, Results for Therapies delivered by Hypfocus may vary from person to person