Breaking the cycle of bad decisions isn’t easy. If you’re like me, you’ve developed the bad habit of repeating the same detrimental situations because you:
Don’t ask enough of the right questions.
Don’t pay enough attention to detail.
Don’t properly weigh the pros and cons of each opportunity before you accept it.
Don’t communicate your specific needs in the given situation.
Doing these things quickly lands you in the position of a doormat or in yet another situation that could have been easily avoided with just a little foresight. Now you’re saddled with a new responsibility that will consume your precious time. Here are some tips to get you into a new mindset and help you with breaking the cycle:
Once Things Stop Making Sense, Stop Doing Them
When breaking the cycle there is a big difference between giving up when things get tough and recognizing a toxic situation and staying away from it.
“Part of being a winner is knowing when enough is enough. Sometimes you have to give up the fight and walk away, and move on to something that’s more productive.” ~Donald Trump
I used to think that if I walked away that I was avoiding the problem rather than trying to solve it – so I remained where I was. I didn’t want to be weak. I wanted to see it through. My perception was entirely skewed because I endured situations that made me completely miserable. I had to learn how to identify which situations I should stick with and which ones needed to be excised from my life. Figuring out how to have the courage to walk away from circumstances that made me unhappy turned into one of my biggest strengths.
Taking a Stand for What Works for You
Breaking the cycle and taking a stand for what works for you doesn’t mean being confrontational, but it does mean communicating what you want and what you need. Avoiding telling people what you want is only going to keep you from moving forward. You will remain in the same situation and people will continue to take advantage of you. At this point, it’s no longer them who is at fault, it’s now on you. This does not excuse how you are treated by others, but it also doesn’t excuse yourself from remaining in a situation you don’t want to be in.
Stick with the Decision, It Will Get Easier
At first taking that step can seem impossible, but once you get over that fear, it only gets easier-after all, breaking the cycle isn’t an overnight thing. The quicker you decide to face that fear and move past it, the faster you will be crossing things off of your life’s To-Do-List. Think about this; the more you do things, the quicker they become a habit
Be Consistent with Your Decisions
Consistency has become an important word in my vocabulary. It’s something that I have struggled with maintaining throughout my life and something I am now conscious of everyday. Being consistent with your decision making will give you higher probability in being successful in whatever it is that you do.
Think about all of the negative things you constantly tell yourself:
I hate my job. I’m not doing what I want to do, but I don’t know what I want to do. I’m not happy. I’m not happy with my relationship. I’m not happy because I’m not in a relationship. I hate my body. My friends suck. Everything sucks. I don’t know how to change it.
You do know, you just have to make the decision to do it, and then start.
Imagine taking that time and energy to tell yourself the opposite:
I hate my job, so I am going to start making a list of what I can do to find something better. I’m not happy, so I am going to start doing more things that make ME happy.
I don’t know what I want to do, so I am going to brainstorm things that interest me.
I’m not happy with my relationship, so I am going to communicate more with my partner about what makes ME happy and what I need from a relationship while taking into consideration what they need as well.
I want to be in a relationship, I know it will happen when it happens, so I need to use this time to focus on myself and do the things that make ME happy.
I’m not happy with my body, so I am going to start taking the steps to change that.
I will not be too hard on myself, I will allow myself to enjoy my journey.
I don’t like my friends, so I am going to start surrounding myself with more like-minded people that make me feel good and encourage me to be the best version of myself that I can be.
Everything does not suck. Everything only sucks if I say it sucks which I am no longer going to say.
Get out of Your Head and into a Better Way of Thinking
Your mind has been trained to think a certain way and it can be retrained. Think of all the years you have been so hard on yourself. It could take you weeks, months, maybe years to completely break the cycle, but no matter the amount of time, learning how to love yourself is worth all of the time you have to give. Be consistent with being positive and building yourself up, because no one can do that for you, it comes from within.
You don’t have to look back and say to yourself- shoulda, coulda, woulda. You can be that person that looks back and smiles at how far you’ve come. So start thinking more about what works for you. Speak up! Communicate it! Start doing the things that make you happy; because once you do, you will immediately benefit. You’ll find yourself exposed to things that would have never of happened if you remained inside your comfort zone.
It’s time to break the cycle!