10 tips for learning to control impulses

It is not uncommon for us to do something that we regret later. Sometimes our appetites dominate us and we behave impulsively, without thinking about the consequences.

There are all kinds of impulses, good and bad, but behind them lies the difficulty of controlling our behavior. Saying bad things to the couple, eating too much candy, or buying clothes and spending your savings are examples of impulsive behavior.

Although varied, they all have consequences that can harm us, so it is important to continue a series of tips for learning to control impulses. Let’s take a look at a few of them.

    Tips for learning to control impulses

    Not everyone behaves with the same degree of impulsiveness. Some have problems relating to others, while others have no control over what they say or do. Telling your boss you can’t stand him at all is not the same as punching him all over the nose, although both, of course, are examples of behaviors for nothing appropriate.

    There are different ways to reduce the number of times we behave impulsively, which allows us to take control of our own behavior and gain a greater degree of self-control.

    1. Identify how and when they happen

    The vast majority of impulsive behaviors it has a reason behind, if it is associated with a psychological disorder as more contextual factors.

    As much as possible, identifying what is behind the appearance of impulsive behavior and when it occurs is a key factor in knowing how to deal with it. For example, if we are struggling with the urge to grab a piece of candy in between, can we ask ourselves several questions like why do I want to snack? Is my food full enough? What made me want to drink chocolate?

    So by answering these questions we can understand more in depth why the impetus is given and, in turn, opt for alternative behaviors to prevent it from happening.

    2. Review the emotions

    When we have a helping hand, how do we feel? This question is very important, especially looking at before, during and after the implementation of the dreaded and worrying behavior.

    It is possible that our mood is a causal factor in the onset of the behavior. We must meditate on what we felt before deciding to achieve it.

    As we grow we can be satisfied, however this satisfaction will last a very short time, for after performing the conduct repentance will come and the “why did I do this?”

    Keeping this in mind while you are about to engage in impulsive behavior may involve avoiding it altogether.

      3. Look for a distraction

      The world is full of all kinds of stimuli, which can help us avoid engaging in behavior that we don’t want to do rationally but our body asks us to do it.

      For example, we just spoke to our partner on her cell phone and she told us that last night she didn’t like the way we clean the dishes which she always tells us but we don’t understand why she thinks they are not. t very clean.

      Faced with this situation, we might respond impulsively with a “because now you grandchildren” or “you are too perepunyetes”, which is clear that this will not help calm the spirits.

      Instead of answering them, it is better to wait – watch TV, read a book or paint a picture. These are activities that help to isolate yourself from the world, to disconnect for a while.

      Then, when you are calmer, you can think more rationally and tell the couple to explain why we are doing things wrong.

      4. Think about the immediate future

      One of the ideas most shared by psychologists, especially from mindfulness, is the idea of live the here and now, the present moment.

      However, a good way to prevent the impulse from happening is to think about how we’re going to feel immediately after doing it, and also about changes in both the environment and our social environment.

      We can try to coldly think about the consequences of being too sincere, breaking something or having a snack we didn’t have, to name just a few examples.

      5. Count to ten

      Taking deep breaths and counting to ten, while simple and inexpensive, is very effective. It allows us to think with a certain degree of depth about why we want to do what we want to do..

      Ten seconds is just a suggestion. Depending on our level of impulsivity, we may need more time to calm our impulsivity.

      6. Meditation and yoga

      Any practice in which a deep reflection of our psychological state is carried out not only contributes to better control and emotional adjustment, but as a beneficial side effect it also allows us to have better control over our impulses.

      It can be done in any way possible, although the best known and most studied meditation is mindfulness.

      Yoga also servesSince, as a physical activity, it offers not only physical benefits, but also mental benefits, which allows us to have a calmer and more rational view of our momentary appetites.

      7. Think about alternatives

      Whether it’s out of boredom or because we’re in a tremendous rage, impulses happen. A good way to avoid carrying out the dreaded behavior, like eating that chocolate we saved for the weekend or hitting someone who just said something mean to us, is to engage in behavior that does. replaces.

      Obviously, having so many different types of impulses will, in turn, have many ways to replace them, but either way, it must serve the function of preventing unwanted behavior from occurring.

      For example, to avoid cutting chocolate when it is not touching, you can make the healthy decision to have a glass of water and, if it does not fill enough, take another until it is. is full.

      As for sticking a punch, a less harmful option towards others is to take a pillow and make this object the victim of the blow.

      8. Identify positive impulses

      Just as there are negative impulses, there are others that help us on a daily basis. While it is best to think before doing it, deep meditating is absolutely not a very adaptive behavior either, as it can waste a lot of precious time.

      Examples of impulsive behaviors that can be positive would be telling a friend that the clothes he is wearing are horrible and thus prevent him from making a fool of himself, buying all the vegetables at a reduced price at the supermarket …

      Once these positive impulses are identified, they can significantly contribute to changing a person’s behavior, especially if these behaviors that imply certain advantages are prioritized instead of executing those impulses considered to be harmful.

      Gradually, the body and the mind will enter a state of satisfaction to see that we do indeed see our desires come true, and besides that they are good.

      9. Learn to tolerate frustration

      Impulses come from desires, desires to want to express an opinion, to want to do something, or to interact in a socially disapproved way, but it can give us some relief in the short term.

      Therefore, trying to prevent these impulses from occurring generates frustration, which does not facilitate self-control, Since human beings by nature try to satisfy their desires the earliest possible.

      If you can come to terms with this discomfort and try to live with it, you will gradually train your body and mind to resist the impulse, and there will come a time when you will hardly give up.

      10. Learn from our mistakes

      Humans are the only animal capable of tripping twice with the same stone, and impulses, whatever they are, are a clear example of this.

      Over and over we have said to each other, “I fell again”, “I don’t know how to control myself” and phrases like that. To be wrong is human, but not to learn from our mistakes is to miss a very good opportunity to correct them.

      A good method to deal with these impulses is have a notebook or calendar to write in when the impetus given has been given trying to avoid and the cause associated with it.

      Based on this, you will have a more holistic view of the individual’s behavior, learning what factors contribute to the impulse and therefore be able to prevent small triggers from occurring that together contribute to the driving.

      11. Go to therapy

      In most cases, the pulses that are performed are not something that necessarily involves a serious problem, however, certain behaviors such as addiction, aggression or self-harm involve consulting a professional.

      The psychotherapist will be in charge of proposing therapies which reduce this obviously harmful impulsivity for the person, diagnosing the possible disorder which underlies it.

      There are many disorders that could be related to the concept of impulse, as in the case of many personality disorders, eating disorders (with purgative behaviors and binge eating), ADHD, and of course , impulse control disorder.

      Bibliographical references:

      • DW Black (2001). “Compulsive purchasing disorder: definition, evaluation, epidemiology and clinical management.” CNS drugs. 15 (1): 17-27.
      • Grant JE, Power MN (2004). “Impulse control disorders: clinical features and pharmacological management”. Annals of Clinical Psychiatry. 16 (1): 27-34.
      • Wright A., Rickards H., Cavanna AE (December 2012). “Impulse control disorders in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome”. The Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience. 24 (1): 16-27.

      Leave a Comment