In today’s world, we have been trained to seek immediate gratification. Have you ever caught yourself refreshing a website because it did not load immediately? Email is now easily accessible on our phones, you can communicate with friends and family in a matter of seconds, and you can receive a package the would have previously taken weeks on the same day. Patience and mindfulness has become more difficult than ever. Controlling the impulse to do, say, and get things cheap and NOW is challenging.
You might notice that you are having destructive behaviors because of the need for automatic reward. For example, using drugs and alcohol, reckless spending, gambling, conflicts in relationships, self-harming or binging on junk food are behaviors that can be driven by emotion, rather than logic. The gratification of right now feels good, it feels powerful. What we know is that sometimes we regret it later. Later when the credit card debt starts piling up. Later when we are lonely because we’ve pushed people away. Later when our words and actions catch up with us.
Our counselors can assist you with learning skills to identify and resist these urges to act impulsively. We can help you identify unhealthy behaviors, and provide you tools to improve wanted behaviors and decrease negative outcomes. In counseling, you can expect to talk to someone who will not judge you for your actions or shame you for the decisions you have made but instead support and guide you through change.
Sometimes impulse control can be a result of underlying issues such as trauma, depression, or anxiety. Your Room for Change counselor can help navigate these issues, as well as identify the root of your behaviors. If you or a loved one are experiencing the result of impulsive behaviors, please give us a call.