(The Podcast of this blog can be found here)
It seems nobody had any thoughts on the image from last week, so I will talk a little today about habits and overcoming them.
We all have experienced habits of some kind, from physical ones like twitches or tapping the nose when thinking, to emotional responses of comfort eating and chemical addictions like smoking, drinking and drug abuse, and as everyone knows, some are harder to break than others.
I was recently in Florence, experiencing a new city, when on a trip from the city centre up to the Plaza Michelangelo, I came across a group of young people looking for signatures for their work fighting against drugs in the country.
They represented Communita Lautari, a facility for education, rehabilitation and ultimately social reintegration of dependent people, through a therapeutic programme run by a team of psychologists, doctors, psychiatrists, educators, community operators, employment counsellors and social workers, all free of charge to the individual and their family. They are funded by donation, and recognised by the Region of Lombardy and certified by the Local Health Authority of Brescia. (Check out their work through the link above, but be advised it is in Italian)
I only had a short time to talk, and was fascinated by the stories of two of the young men who described their introduction to their psychologists and behavioural coach/therapist as the turning point for them, because it was through them and the sessions exploring the root causes of, but more importantly the neural connections between, trigger events and their reactions of resorting to drugs, that they managed to change their dependence on substances, and become ambassadors for the programme to help others like them.
They had been through many options of drug reduction programmes and therapies, but none of these had worked from the basis of addressing the causes and the links between events and responses, so had ultimately failed to provide a long term solution.
Their stories reminded me of my own journeys breaking tobacco and antidepressant dependencies earlier in my life, the latter being also achieved through working with a very talented psychologist and behavioural therapist, working with me to identify and break the links using awareness, alternative action strategies and a lot of hard work.
These days I deal with many clients who have developed event/reaction habits, using many of the methods I learned through both my own experiences and my training, with significant success, so you should never give up, because breaking your own habits is only as far away as a good life coach with behavioural therapy skills, and a lot of trust and hard work, but believe me, and those like the two men I fortuitously met that day who have overcome their own habits and dependencies, when I say it is SO worth it.
If anyone reading this is looking for help to break a habit or dependency themselves, or knows someone who is, feel free to contact me through this website for a confidential discussion.
For now, with the Festive Season upon us, have a great time and be mindful of those around you who want your time and love, and put away the social media and make your nearest and dearest your social focus for the coming week, and remember to 'Live Life, don't Watch Life'.