Why unlearning toxic behaviors will benefit your life
Often times it is very hard for a person to recognize their own behavior, especially if they are displaying any toxic behaviors, because in their minds this behavior is normal.
As a hypnotherapist, we focus primarily on the subconscious part of the mind, which holds 88% of our mind power, and where all of our conditioning and associations have been developed.
From zero to eight years old are subconscious is being formed by all the different influences around us, especially our caretakers. And from this time frame, we believe that everything we is being taught to us as the absolute truth, so we do not question it.
So if a child is being raised within a toxic or unhealthy environment, they will unconsciously pick up these same patterns and behaviors and display them themselves, because to them this is the norm and no one is teaching them how to properly conduct themselves, communicate, react, or respond, they are just learning what they are observing.
So when we become adults, and we still have these unhealthy and toxic behaviors, that we have not worked with, it will display as an automatic response.
Many toxic behaviors are:
· closing off, and shutting out - especially when we do not get our way, disagree, or become defense of what is being displayed to us, instead of communicating our needs, desires, and wants, we tend to stonewall the other person, until they cave or the situation does not get resolved.
· silent treatment - it’s an extreme method of punishing the other person, and displaying negative reinforcement, so they will not do it again.
· manipulation - works when I person is suffering from low self-esteem and cannot communicate their needs to the person doing the manipulating, and the manipulator make a person feel guilty or shames them to get what they want.
· shame/belitting - putting another person down or making them feel unworthy of a particular situation, and boost up their own ego.
· guilt- making a person feel guilty that something will happen, if a particular event is not done, and if they do something it will have a negative impact and it will be their fault.
· tantrums- throwing a tantrum like a child, and bursting out and displaying very erratic behavior to get your way. embarrassing the other person.
· passive-aggressiveness- letting situations slide, and having a buildup of resentment and anger then finally bursting out without rationale or reason.
· aggressive - lashing out because we do not agree with what is happening with a situation, and feels they cannot be heard without being overly aggressive.
· cheating - needing the validation from others, secondary gain that reinforces a shame pattern/ underlying belief.
· lying - not telling the truth to protect someone else feelings, or to protect ourselves from being punished.
· verbal/emotional abuse - shaming, belitting, manipulating, destructively tearing down another person’s self-esteem, for own personal gain.
· physical abuse - Is a toxic behavior to be in power over another person, usually so the person will not rise up and defend themselves.
· substance abuse - Whether its taking drugs or alcohol, this behavior is unhealthy, because it is an escape mechanism that doesn't allow the person to deal with the real issue, it is avoidant behavior that doesn't allow them to deal with the reality of a situation.
· self-sabotage - things can be going well for a person, and because it is unknown or unfamiliar to them, they will create situations or scenarios, that reinforce they are unworthy and fulfilling their own self-fulfilling prophecy.
These are all learned behaviors, and the great thing about learnt behavior is that we can also unlearn them, and replace them with new positive and beneficial behaviors.
· being assertive - communicating your needs right away as they happen.
· communicating - talking through situations
· positive reinforcement - communicate needs and when need is met, reinforce with a gesture or reward.
· compassion/understanding - stepping into another persons shoes and seeing the different aspects of a situation, and find a rational solution together
· supportive - encourage others to do their best, as well as encouraging ourselves.
· self-care - taking time out of the day to relax and put our own needs first.
· exercise - great stress reliever, and allows you to look and feel healthy and energized.
· volunteering - promotes a sense of kindness and self worth
· boundaries - communicating and displaying what you will and will not tolerate from yourself and another person.
Learning these new behaviors will help to promote confidence and self-esteem which will allow you to effectively handle people and situations, and weed out the people and behaviors you no longer prefer.