What keeps us from getting help

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It all started with the New Year Re-Soulution blog. Whilst reflecting on the Three BIG Sleep Stealers it became clear that whilst most people are aware that they need more sleep, they are loathe to do something about it. At first this appears plain crazy.... You know you are not getting enough. You want more. You know it will make your life easier and better. Come on already. Get.It.Fixed.

But, in reality, this applies not just to sleeping, but to exercising, being more assertive, what you are eating and how you are spending your money, as well as all other areas of behaviour change.

The trouble is, that as human beings, we have rather large heads full of brains that allow us to do things not just for survival or enjoyment but for a host of complex reasons like fame and charity (not to mention revenge, delayed gratification and self-promotion).

No other creature on the planet makes so many decisions that often go directly against their instincts. Feeling tired in a meeting? There's no way you can simply nod off. Starving for something to eat but left your wallet at home? No chance of simply taking the food off the store shelf and running. Need to get a flu vaccine? Chances are you will put up with the pain so you can prevent getting sick this winter.

And so we find it baffling, at times, that what we want to do and what we actually end up doing, is so vastly different. Apparently, the trick is to view behaviour change as a scale. On one side are all the factors that keep you locked in to behaving a certain way. On the other side are the factors driving you to change. What takes place depends on what side of the scale is heavier. Want to lose weight but cant shed the pounds? Sit down and think about what's keeping the weight on. Want to sleep more than 6 hours a night? Jot down all the things getting in your way.

Unable to do this your self? Enlist some help - from those who know you best and will be honest (a spouse or sibling is a great resource) or get advice from a professional (their insight is often worth its weight in eBucks).



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