Can Your Emotional Habits Be Hurting Your Relationship

“In order to break a habit, a habit must first be acknowledged.”

Emotion – a conditioned response to a stimulus 

Habit – an acquired mode of behavior that has become nearly or completely involuntary


Imagine:
 

You come home after spending 1 ½ hours traveling to work, to spend 8 hours at a job you can’t stand, working for and with people you can do better without, then travel 2 hours back home, due to road construction, to find your s/o on their day off just chilling on Facebook. The place is a mess, nothing smells like anything has been attempted to have been cooked, the laundry haven’t been touched…only added to, and their behinds were home ALL DAMN DAY. 

So naturally, you start bitching. Like really, how dare they take you for granted? Who the hell do they take you for?  You know you can do better by your dayum self. If it was just you, the place would sure as hell be neater and you’d have leftovers from the previous night’s dinner. But nooooo, you have to sacrifice that meal to feed that ungrateful, lazy – ass body you share your space with; a body that probably haven’t moved from the spot they were sitting in since logging onto the internet. Well maybe to relieve them self or feed their face.

So after hooting and hollering for some time, that’s when they want to make some kind of effort to move their asses. But hell! Who wants it now? They had AT LEAST 10 hours to do something IF they really wanted to, right? Of course you tell them not to bother, you’ll do it yourself. The whole time you perform your chores, you either “talk to yourself” loud enough for them to hear you or you’re creating scene after scene after scene in your head…

…never one considering that it is THEIR day off to do what they chose. Granted, it wasn’t what you would have done (or at least you’d like to believe) but even so, it’s their day to do whatever. Not yours.

Meanwhile, the time you are spending creating scene after scene after scene in your head, you are unknowingly producing a physical sensation of a false sense of power, brought on by the body’s natural drug known as adrenaline. Once this chemical is released into the body, depending on the situation will determine the sensation we experience. 

For instance, when we are faced with a life threatening situation, adrenaline will give us an enormous amount of strength and speed. However, since our brain is incapable of deciphering the difference between a physical threat and a thought, it will always perform as if the threat was physical. Meaning, when we get angry from a thought we are having, our brain releases just the right amount of adrenaline into our bodies, providing us with the physical sensation required for that moment. Likewise, when we become frustrated, the more we think about the situation, the angrier we become. How do we know we are becoming angrier? We FEEL it in our bodies. Right? Of course we do. How else would we know we were angry? The angrier we get, the stronger we feel and the stronger we feel, the more we are prone to become violent. Why? Because the effects of the adrenaline makes us feel as if we’re ready for anything…even the things that may follow what we start. The sense of power feels good and is in fact necessary. It is when we seek power over someone else do we become addicted to sensations that the associated emotions brings, leaving us susceptible to becoming an emotional addict.

If you think about it deep enough you will find that this applies to all emotions.

Ok…what now?

EVERYTHING we do is out of habit. Think about it, it would really suck to have to think about everything we do before we do it, wouldn’t you say?  If you can come to a level of understanding to which you’ll be able to identify each one, you’ll begin to make the appropriate changes for the desired results.

For instance, let’s say you’re in a relationship and you find yourself complaining about your mate/spouse (just like the above story), yet, no matter how much you complain, changes are not made from your partner. The habit you formed was complaining. If you find that you complain, often KNOWING no changes are being attempted on behalf of your partner; nor are  you, yourself, going to do anything different other than COMPLAIN about “it”, you’ve formed a habit of complaining. You’ve become addicted to the sensations your body feels that complaining provides and like all habits, it comes with a reward. And what’s that reward? The sensation experienced from the adrenaline that flows through your body, when you are in the state of complaining. It becomes a temporary rush…lasting for as long as you decide to complain.

In other words, you are addicted to the body’s natural drug, adrenaline, and have formed a habit that will supply you with it. But that’s not the only factor involved. In fact, there are many, however, I’ll touch on these two here…thought and ego. Your thoughts are like the money needed to buy the drug. As long as you have the money (the thoughts)…you’ll have your high.

So what does that mean? Your thoughts (emotion) of what should or shouldn’t be, is what keeps the supply of adrenaline flowing. Your thoughts will keep you in a defensive state to justify why should feel the way you do. 

However, it is your ego, that won’t set you free. 

Breaking the Habit:

Below are some steps to assist in your breaking the habit of your emotional addictions:

1. The first step in breaking the habit is taking full responsibility for all actions and reactions.

Accepting sole responsibility for all of your actions (thoughts, spoken words and physical will). No one makes you think, say, or do anything you did not choose to do. 

2. Become aware of reactions to stimulus.

If you choose to do something, do it without complaint. Remember, it was your choice to do it in the first place. Regardless of the “why”, it was still your choice. 

3. Allow others to be just as they are without negative thoughts.

We are all created and designed differently for we all have our own experiences constructed through nature and nurture. There are no two people alike and differences are to be respected. Just as you would like it to be for you. 

4. Limit your expectations of others.

Expectations leads to disappointments and disappointments are followed by regrets. Allowing things to unfold naturally will broaden your life’s experiences. 

5. Know your triggers!!

Knowing your triggers will allow you to keep your composure during trying situations. Even if you have found yourself responding to a trigger, you can stop responding in that way at any given moment.

These will take a lot of awareness, daily practice, dedication and self – commitment on your part. No one is going to be able to do it for you. 

What are your thoughts? Do you have an emotional addiction? Is it love, sex, envy, anger, sadness or something else?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!!

 

Just leave your comment and enlighten me. 

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