Think for a moment about negative thoughts that might come your way over the course of the day. Here are some that I might be prone to think…
“I’m not a good enough husband / dad / friend.”
“This person doesn’t like me or approve of me.”
“My dreams are never going to come true.”
You may have different negative thoughts than I do, but they all have one thing in common. They are LIES that seek to propel you deeper into the darkness.
If we listen to these lies or negative thoughts,
we are prone to self-soothe with a negative behavior.
At this stage of my life, my two most common negative behaviors are overeating and mindless social media scrolling. I feel bad about myself, and I think, “Oh, that bag chips will make me feel better…and those cookies…and those crackers.”
What about you? What do you tend to turn to in order to self-soothe?
Some common coping mechanisms that many people use include…
– Talking negatively about others
– Over-eating or under-eating
– Binging on movies, shows, or games
– Alcohol, drugs, smoking
– Promiscuity or pornography
Some of those may not be very popular to talk about, but they are ways we avoid dealing with reality and try to make ourselves feel better.
You know what the result is? Oftentimes, we end up feeling worse.
“Why did I eat that entire bag of sour cream and onion potato chips? The roof of my mouth is raw, and I won’t be able to taste anything else of days.”
Remember, negative thoughts
lead to negative self-soothing behaviors
which then result in negative feelings
and more negative thoughts.
Which self-soothing coping mechanism do you want to give up? And, what life-giving behavior will you choose instead?