Personal Growth

How do you change unhealthy default thinking?

November 7, 2013


We know changing our thinking changes our lives. But what do you do when unhealthy default thinking keeps sticking around? I’m talking about thinking habits that go way back to childhood and other formative years.

Unhealthy default ways of thinking go incredibly deep and many times we have trouble even recognizing them, let alone changing them. And when we do recognize them changing them for good (or completely revamping our thinking) can be challenging to say the least.

Benjamin Franklin recognized this challenge and developed a systematic way of changing his thought patterns and actions, which proved to change him as a whole. He had 13 areas in which he wanted to improve and worked on one a week, charting his progress as he went.

Gretchen Wilson in her book The Happiness Project took a similar approach except she divided her areas into 12 month long projects. She also charted her progress as she went.

Both Franklin and Wilson were determined to shape their thinking so that they could live lives which felt purposeful and meaningful and full. They did what most people never get around to doing – changing.

Your turn: Have you been able to change your unhealthy default ways of thinking? How did you go about doing it? Did you use a system, a book, a series of tapes, mentoring, or counseling? Did you change your environment or change a job? Were there specific actions which led to radically new and improved thinking in your life?

I’d love to hear about it in the comment section of this post. 

Photo Credit: Scott Smith (SRisonS) via Compfight cc

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  • Reply Ann Musico November 7, 2013 at 5:33 am

    That’s the 2nd time in 2 days I’ve heard Benjamin Franklin’s book mentioned! I think I probably need to see if I can find out more about this! I have practiced renewing my mind with God’s Word and that has made a huge difference. I learned there are some destructive cellular memories we might not even be consciously aware of that can affect us in many ways including physically and found The Healing Codes which I spend 10 minutes doing daily and have seen a wonderful improvement.

    • Reply Claudia Good November 7, 2013 at 9:46 pm

      Oh that is funny Ann, I guess you should indeed read it! What are the healing codes? I have never heard of them…

      • Reply Ann Musico November 8, 2013 at 5:59 am

        They’re kind of a unique combination of energy medicine, meditation and renewing your mind! You can read more about them here – it better explains them:

        • Reply Claudia Good November 8, 2013 at 2:01 pm

          Thanks for sharing Ann! You always have such unique insights – love it!

  • Reply Angel November 8, 2013 at 9:36 am

    I formerly had a negative mindset and everything I did was in spite of …… The stress to my life was tangible. My change has been a gradual change with many contributing factors, books, dvd’s, learning to know myself, and surrounding myself with people who inspire me. As an avid exerciser I have to say that the correlation’s between optimal physical performance and optimal life performance is not lost on me. When I began to implement the strategies in life that I did in the gym I saw my life become congruent.

    • Reply Claudia Good November 8, 2013 at 2:06 pm

      Loved this… your words and insights! So cool that something clicked for you when you connected the strategies from working out and life – I would love to hear more of your insights on this so I can use them!!! In fact, it sounds like the beginning of a great book if you ask me! 😉

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