“…we’ll look back at this and have a good laugh!” Think so?

Okay, let’s raise our right hands. How many times have we said, or shared, the following? “You know, someday we’ll look back at this and have a good laugh!”

Time to fess up. Remember, you took an oath. Is it a frequently used arrow in your cliche quiver? Think about how many times you’ve shared that phrase. Maybe you frequently repeat it to yourself???

Well, as much as it may appear to provide some sort of perspective in the midst of suffering – and may provide some mild comedic relief…

It’s gets old – fast!

So what are we going to do about it? Hmmm – seems like we have two choices…

  • Quit using the phrase, because it only blows-off getting around to working on our suspect decision-making and judgment.

From someone who’s said and heard it a million times, take my word it can become highly repetitive. I can recall saying it to a friend several years ago. And suddenly I said to myself, “Bill, aren’t you tired of using that worn-out cliche? There’s a nasty pattern here, and you’d better do something about it!” I mean, it hit me like a right jab to the nose.

It was then I woke-up and smelled the coffee. And I realized the only reason I’d relied upon the phrase for so long was because I never accepted the reality of my poor decision-making and judgment – and got down to facilitating change.

So instead of continuing to reflect upon how funny it’ll be to one day laugh at my present sad circumstances, I decided to work on not having to use the phrase in the first place.

Which brings us to our second action step.

  • Stop doing the things that prompt the cliche.

Anyone with a history of mood and anxiety shtuff – within or without a current episode – is likely to be subject to decision-making and judgment woes. And it’s not the end of the world, nor is beyond repair.

It’s all about executive functioning, the home of which is our brain’s prefrontal cortex (PFC). And the PFC just happens to play a huge role in our mood and anxiety presentation. So is it any wonder there’s the occasional traffic jam in the PFC, resulting in some dicey decision-making and judgment calls?

Now, of particular note here is a good deal of inattention and impulsivity. For example, if we’re depressed we’re much more likely to simply not care enough to make quality decisions. If we’re highly anxious, hypomanic, or manic; our excitation may show the door to any ability to make good judgment calls.

But there are all sorts of things we can do to fine tune our processes of thinking, decision-making, and judgment. In fact, let’s discuss them in tomorrow’s piece.

In the meantime, let’s at least gain some insight into whether or not we’re using our cliche of note as a rationalization for our goofy thinking – and doing something about it. Then we can work on knocking it off.

image credit  mirror.co.uk