“Frame your thoughts like this—you are an old person, you won’t let yourself be enslaved by this any longer, no longer pulled like a puppet by every impulse, and you’ll stop complaining about your present fortune or dreading the future.”MARCUS AURELIUS
As a part of growing up, we sought independence. We don’t like now people telling us what to do and how to do things. But when it comes to over emotions and impulses we let it boss us around to do things and to control our mind. Is this really true independence?
I was an impulsive person, I think I have done multiple things in my on impulse and regretted a lot of it later. So, am I saying that I no longer an impulsive person? The answer is I can’t say for sure. I am training and adapting my mind to the various schools of thought over the past few months and I feel now I don’t feel the urge to act on impulse. There are times where the temptations were high but somehow I was able to hold myself. So, I think I can give you some advice which has helped me to curb my impulses.
1. Don’t take decisions when you are happy or sad
I don’t remember from where I have got this advice but this is the mantra I hold on to when dealing with impulsive decisions. I was looking for a new place to move in for months and somehow none of the places I saw was striking a chord with me. But when I finally find the ad for the new place(where I am going to move next month) I was sure that this is gonna be my new home. My old impulsive self wanted to finalize the deal then and there only fearing I might lose it.
But the new me held myself. I delayed everything by a week and hence I was able to negotiate rent too without being too desperate. And I am so proud of myself that I took a balanced decision after analyzing and going over all the aspects.
When we are too happy or too sad, our thoughts are often clouded by so many emotions that we are not able to analyze things and often make decisions that are not very wise. And hence, always stick to this mantra “don’t decide anything when you are too happy or too sad”
2. Ask why
One of the most important things I have learned over the last few months is to build a value system for yourself. As per Stephen Covey, your values are your constitution. And once you have built a value system for yourself you should learn to evaluate every decision of your life against that value system.
Before taking any decision, just stop and ask yourself why you are doing this. And make sure you don’t do it until you find a convincing answer for yourself.
These are the 2 points that have guided me to stop taking any impulsive or rash decisions. Let me know in the comments if you have some other tips and guidance on this topic.