How To Stop Being Impulsive: 5 Keys To Achieve It

How to stop being impulsive

Impulsivity can be a significant problem, both when it comes to relating to others and when it comes to managing our emotions and behaviors. For this reason, there are those who consider themselves too impulsive people, and look for ways to put a limit on this tendency to let themselves go.

In this article We will see a series of tips on how to stop being impulsive (keeping in mind that impulsivity is a matter of degree).

Tips to stop being impulsive

Any psychological change requires at least two things: time and effort. This is because behaviors are not like solely biological processes, some of which can be modified in a matter of minutes by introducing a substance into the body; Psychology is fundamentally about modifying habits and routines, and that requires continued practice.

Therefore, knowing how to stop being impulsive implies being aware that this change is not going to happen overnight and requires commitment and effort, which always causes a minimal amount of discomfort when leaving the comfort zone.

That said, let’s look at the advice, taking into account that all of them must be adapted to the specific conditions in which each person lives, since each person is different.

1. Change your environment to change you

Something that many people do not understand is that individual psychological changes do not occur in isolation from the environment, but rather maintain a bidirectional relationship with it. Therefore, the most lasting and significant changes come at least through changing the environments in which we habitually move and to which we expose ourselves so that their characteristics shape how we are.

You may be interested:  ​Closed for Holidays! The Psychological Need to Rest

Therefore, to stop being impulsive, a person must try to avoid exposing yourself to contexts in which impulsivity is a frequent reaction to what happens. For example, places with violence or physical dangers that require a quick response to practically any stimulus, or places full of elements that invite us to enter the vicious circle of obsessions or addictive behaviors.

2. Focus on your actions

The main theoretical model used to explain how self-control works in human beings indicates that the control of actions It is related to the regulation of emotions and thoughts.

Therefore, one factor that can help stop being excessively impulsive is to focus on not giving in to physical outbursts. Be clear about this objective in moments when the temptation to perform a harmful action appears.

3. Live a healthy life

Much of impulsivity can be due to stress.

Walking in a state of alert caused by mental exhaustion, the feeling of having many fronts to attend to and tasks to finish, or the feeling that you are in a hostile place, can cause even the slightest reason to get frustrated to fall. in impulsivity, whether facing a problem aggressively, or by evading responsibilities through sensations that distract us (binge eating, impulse shopping, etc.).

Thus, the most common solutions to reduce stress and anxiety usually result in a reduction in impulsivity, and among these, it is worth highlighting the maintenance of a balanced diet and adequate sleep schedules.

4. Keep addictions away

Addictions are a constant source of frustration, and that leads us to be impulsive. For example, if you feel an extreme need to go outside to smoke, you are much more likely to respond aggressively to someone who proposes something that would delay that cigarette date.

You may be interested:  Why Do We Find it Difficult to Decide?

5. Question your beliefs

There are beliefs that predispose us to be impulsive in some contexts. Ideas that dehumanize certain people, for example, invite us to treat them as objects, that is, not to take their feelings into account, so the filters of socially acceptable behavior do not apply here.

Changing these beliefs is essential, and this is something that can be done, for example, through cognitive restructuring in psychotherapy.

6. Surround yourself with non-impulsive people

Finally, this element is also very relevant: stay in a context in which impulsivity is not a constant throughout the world.

We are partly what we see on a daily basis, so constantly interacting with impulsive people will make us tend to be more so. In this way, changing social circles will help us a lot to leave impulsiveness behind.