‘Shock of the new’….Habit Busting!

Often what makes us happiest in life is the unexpected – the chance encounter or the unpredicted event. Basically things that we haven’t chosen, worried about, anticipated or planned, that turn out good for us make us happy.

So if we want to feel better or happier we can contrive to supply ourselves with unexpected experiences. Here’s one way:

Ask a friend to go to see a film with you. Go at a set time and choose whatever film you fancy ONLY when you get there. Most of us go to see a film when we know what we want to watch. If you just arrive at the cinema and choose right then what you want to go for, you might find you watch and enjoy something you would not have otherwise considered. This act alone opens your eyes, self awareness and choices. It reminds us that there is more ‘out there’ to draw from. That we are not just defined by our beliefs and habits.

Before you go make sure you challenge any undermining, negative thoughts. Keep them at bay and let go of them once you’re attention is taken up by watching the film.

Mark Williams and Danny Penman, from whom I have borrowed this idea (Mindfulness 2011 p158) call this the Habit Releaser. I’d call it a habit ‘buster’.

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