It is habit to act on impulses that arise from our personalities. One of my habitual impulses is to worry and I can slide into that quickly, without even being aware of the slide. Others slide habitually into belligerence or stepping in to chaos to take charge. And others slide easily into needing to be needed. Perhaps you slide into filling that empty space with cookies or adding more responsibilities to your to-do list.
What difference does it make?
Why does it matter if can't turn off the "worry fountain" or you push people close to you to do things a little better, a little faster, a little more your way?
It matters because when we act on habitual impulses, we create behavior loops with very limited outcomes - and often not the outcomes we are hoping for.
Trigger, worry, spinning thoughts, story creation...
What if I noticed the trigger, noticed my impulse to slide into worry and instead stopped... and breathed. Relaxed. Noticed and continued to breathe.
Until something shifted.
When I become aware and present, I have a much better chance of being aware of my personality and habitual impulse slides. And that gives me more choice about what comes next.
And interestingly, as my practice continues, I realize that my worrying has very little, if any impact, on outcomes. Nor does eating that extra cookie ever actually fill the empty place.
But breathing and relaxing always brings a shift and with the shift, new perspective, which actually DOES affect outcomes.
It's hard work and worth the practice.
With increased practice of staying present and aware of my habitual slides, comes an opportunity for me to re-align my behavior - perhaps easing my restless sleep, being able to create more space for deep listening, lowering my own anxiety levels.
When I choose to breathe and relax, it helps determine my actions. And actions, aligned with values, supports optimal health.