Kindly, interrupt me

Monday January 21, 2019

If you're like me, you'll have few patterns of behaviour you'd be glad to see the back of this year. Me? I talk to inanimate objects. Yes, I do. I exhort objects that have no power to change to, "Come on!"

These objects are always in rebellion against my will or my schedule. They might be a froward pair of socks that 'refuse' to go on right. It might be a door frame that bumps into me, which I then command to, "Shut up!" as if it had done this deliberately. The really weird thing is that I know this is ridiculous. I know it's daft when I do it.

I'm working on changing silly behaviour patterns like these. They never make me feel good – in fact, they make me feel cross. The phrases, "Shut up!" and "Come on!" – when said in an irritated tone - have a bundle of negative emotions associated with them for me. The best way for me to calm down and get better is to interrupt the pattern.

We've all experienced a pattern of behaviour being interrupted – often when we are angry. If you are having an argument with someone who then does something to make you laugh, you'll know you can't go on playing that pattern of behaviour the same way. Once you laugh, the game is over! You can't stay angry. You might think you're even angrier as in, "Don't make me laugh, I'm being serious!" but it's too late.

A pattern (of behaviour) interrupt can be as simple as a word. My word is, "Adapt!" If something isn't going the way I want it to go, I give myself the command – usually out loud – "Adapt!" This morning, the towel wouldn't go back on the towel-rail the way I wanted it to. The towel had no way to change its behaviour – it's a towel! I said, "Adapt!" and instantly changed the way I was trying to put it on the rail. I got the result I wanted.

If we keep on doing what we've always been doing, and expect matters to work out differently, we're as silly as I have been. Saying, "Adapt!" out loud might work for you too if you find yourself talking to things! It's interesting that the Commandoes use this word too. They have a code where they aim to be first in three areas: to understand and then to adapt and then to overcome.

Am I the only one, or does anyone else have behaviours they'd like to change? How will you interrupt the behaviour pattern so that you create something new? Do you and a close friend or member of the family have an agreed way to interrupt unhelpful behaviours?

If you catch me being silly, kindly, interrupt me!

A Moodscope member.

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