There’s No Such Thing As An ‘Addictive Personality’ – Here’s Why

By Addiction, Habits, Hypnosis, HypnotherapyNo Comments

There’s no such thing as an ‘addictive personality’ – here’s why Mark Griffiths, Nottingham Trent University “Life is a series of addictions and without them we die”. This is my favourite quote in academic addiction literature and was made back in 1990 in the British Journal of Addiction by Isaac Marks. This deliberately provocative and controversial statement was made to stimulate debate about whether excessive and potentially problematic activities such as gambling, sex and work really can be classed as genuine addictions. Many of us might say to ourselves that we are “addicted” to tea, coffee, work or chocolate, or know others who we might describe as being “hooked” on television or using pornography. But do these assumptions have any basis in fact? The issue all comes down to how addiction is defined in the first place – as many of us in the field disagree on what the core components of addiction actually are. Many would argue that the words “addiction” and “addictive” are used so much in everyday circumstances that they have become meaningless. For instance, saying that a book is an “addictive read” or that a specific television series is “addictive viewing” renders the word useless in…

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Struggling With That New Year’s Resolution? How To Hang In There.

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Struggling with that New Year’s resolution? How to hang in there Rachel Grieve, University of Tasmania and Cathryne Lang, Australian Catholic University It’s a time of year when many of us have made resolutions. The New Year feels like an ideal time to kick those old habits and replace them with habits that we hope will make us thinner/richer/younger-looking/insert-desirable-state-of-your-own-here. Of those who make New Year’s resolutions, only one in 12 will achieve them. So what can we do to maximise our chances of success? Self-efficacy is an individual’s belief in their ability to perform a particular action. We can have different levels of self-efficacy in various aspects of our lives, such as in our social interactions and at work. We also have self-efficacy regarding to our ability to eat well and exercise. As self-efficacy reflects a belief in yourself to achieve something, without it, we are unlikely to even attempt behaviour change. Higher levels of self-efficacy are associated with improved achievements. It is because of this that psychologists are very interested in how self-efficacy influences health behaviours. I think I can, I think I can… Self-efficacy is more than just positive thinking. We can build our self-efficacy by: watching others…

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Can’t Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions – Try Being Kind To Yourself

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Can’t keep your New Year’s resolutions – try being kind to yourself Kristin Neff, University of Texas at Austin Many of us will start out the New Year by making a list of resolutions – changes we want to make to be happier such as eating better, volunteering more often, being a more attentive spouse, and so on. But, as we know, we will often fail. After a few failures we will typically give up and go back to our old habits. Why is it so hard to stick to resolutions that require us to make effective or lasting changes? I would argue the problem isn’t that we try and we fail –– the problem is how we treat ourselves when we fail. I study self-compassion, and my research and that of others show that how we relate to personal failure – with kindness or harsh self-judgment – is incredibly important for building resilience. From early childhood, we are taught how we must succeed at all costs. What most of us aren’t taught is how to fail successfully so we can change and grow. One of the best ways to deal with failure is to have self-compassion. What exactly is…

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A Behaviourist’s Guide to New Year’s Resolutions

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A behaviourist’s guide to New Year’s resolutions Rebekah Boynton, James Cook University and Anne Swinbourne, James Cook University Every year you set out determined to stick to your New Year’s resolutions. But year after year you fall off track and quickly abandon them. So why are resolutions so hard to keep? New Year’s resolutions are about trying to break habits, which is hard, but not impossible to do. That’s because habitual behaviour is automatic, easy and rewarding. To change a habit, you need to disrupt your behaviour to make way for a new, more desirable one. But as the number of broken New Year’s resolutions indicates, disrupting old habits and forming new healthy ones can be difficult. But what if you’re motivated to change old habits? Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple. Behaviourism is a theoretical perspective in psychology that tries to understand human and animal behaviour by studying observable behaviour and events. According to behaviourism, habits are initially motivated by the outcomes or consequences of behaviour, like eating food or earning money. Habits are triggered by contextual cues, like the time of day, your location, or objects around you. This contrasts with other ways of looking at how we form…

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