A Twitter thread by Bren.
Understanding Experiential Avoidance
Experiential avoidance (EA) in the ACT model has been broadly defined as any attempt to avoid uncomfortable thoughts, feelings, memories, images and physical sensations—even when doing so creates harm.
It’s natural to seek experiences that make you feel good while avoiding those that cause harm or discomfort. In fact, it’s an essential evolutionary response that could even be considered a normal, protective adaptation.
Experiential avoidance is seen as a coping style that may perpetuate problems or produce new ones.
Experiential avoidance is so common to everyone experiencing career paralysis and yet so unheard of that it needs some closer attention.
Here are 5 commonly cited consequences of experiential avoidance:
#1 Prescription drug dependence
#2 Psychological distress
#3 Long-term disability and lower recovery rates
#4 Increased levels of depression and anxiety
#5 Heightened Pain Sensitivity
Experiential Avoidance can interfere with more important aspects of life.
Putting off an important task because of the discomfort it evokes.
Not taking advantage of an important opportunity to avoid feelings of failure.
Not engaging in exercise due to the effort it demands.
Inability to sustain close relationships to avoid feelings of vulnerability.
Staying in a bad relationship to avoid potential feelings of loneliness from breaking up.
Staying in a career you hate to avoid the feelings of doubt which come from looking at alternatives.
Just 2 days ago I read about 'Implementation Intentions' by Gollwitzer.
Setting implementation intentions is a concept that was introduced by psychologist Peter Gollwitzer.
Do you set goals for yourself and also translate that intention into action?
Why do people set a goal and then fail to get started taking the necessary action in order to achieve their goal? This happens for 3 reasons:
they forget to take the necessary action
they fail to seize opportune moments to act
they have second thoughts at the critical moment.
What Are Implementation Intentions?
While goals specify what you intend to achieve, implementation intentions specify the behavior you intend to take and the situational context in which you intend to take said behavior.
How to Set Implementation Intentions
Identify the action that you’re going to take to achieve your goal, and how you’ll know when to take it.
Identify possible obstacles to goal-achievement, and how you’ll deal with them.
You need to identify the goal directed behavior that you want to take, and the situational cue that will let you know that it’s time to take said behavior.
The first problem that can undermine goal achievement is failing to get started.
You need to identify the obstacles or barriers that could push you off track and interfere with your goal follow-through. Once you’ve identified these obstacles, you create an if-then statement in order to deal with each one.
You need to decide what you want.
Ask yourself what is a worthy goal you want to pursue? Do you want get a higher pay? Complete a project? Eat healthier? Launch a website or blog? Be more productive? Read a book every month? Enroll and complete an online course? Go on a tour? Facilitate a workshop?
Implementation intentions are if-then plans that spell out in advance how one wants to strive for a set goal. For the if-component, a critical cue is selected (e.g., a good opportunity, an anticipated obstacle) that is linked to a goal-directed response in the then-component.
Implementation intentions are can enhance rate of goal attainment.
You reframe your plans as “IF --> THEN” statements.
The “IF” stands for the situational cue and the “THEN” stands for your planned response to that cue.
“If situation x arises, then I will perform response y.”
I have a vision board, success mind map, personal SWOT analysis and growth assessment exercise I do every month.
You can either choose to complain about past experiences or create new experiences for yourself.
This photo was from my workshop at the YWCA canada summit.
I have learned the ability to adjust to discomfort & disappointment (part of life experience).
Being intentional about my networking, learning, entering into spaces (at work, home, community) and getting out there, has helped my personal and professional growth.
Invest in self-determined learning (heutagogy) by taking free/ low-cost online courses to update knowledge.
Ask questions & be open to receive feedback with grace.
Go to work each day with the mindset of a Creator not a Competitor. You're there to create and redistribute value.
I also strategically build healthy relationships with people as part of my personal learning network (PLN). I love learning from others by seeing the world through their own lens.
I value relationships and opportunities to reach out and reconnect with colleagues.
I improved my staying power, productivity & performance by actively taking stock of my portfolio, recreating my personal brand statement & reviewing my personal SWOT analysis.
I jot down all my accomplishments, goals, new skills, & experiences, to see what I need to improve on.
FYI: Vague “if-then’s” create room for deliberation and thus the chance you’ll make a decision that torpedoes your goals.
Read this https://www.artofmanliness.com/articles/a-formula-for-success-the-power-of-implementation-intentions/ …
Diligence, persistence, courage, curiosity, self-discipline, active listening are sine qua nons for growth.
What goal will you be turning into an implementation intention?
Have any experience with implementation intentions?
Stay enlightened not frightened.