When you take a permissive pattern and increase the shoulds by putting rules on it, you can actually start to lose the urge to do it. Especially if your unconscious mind feels that those rules are not ‘on its side’.
I call this the ‘rule hack’ and it works wonders for unfriending those pesky habits you’ve had a love/hate relationship with.
The rule hack is often a method used by hypnotherapists and NLP practitioners to help clients quit smoking. They get the client to agree to only smoke according to certain rules. An example is to get the client to agree that each time they smoke a cigarette, they must hold it between their pinkie and ring finger.
On the surface, this doesn’t seem like a huge change to the pattern, but when the smoker actually complies with this new rule, it no longer feels the same. Its not just the physically awkward sensation, but also the emotional change that breaks the pattern.
Most therapists who use the rule hack don’t usually teach the client any growth mindset hacks. So what typically happens soon after is that the need to depressurise becomes transferred onto another habit. Especially a habit with similar associations and patterns. A habit, say for example, that also involves placing something into the mouth for comfort during break times.
this explains why people tend to get hooked on comfort food and put on a bit of weight after they quit smoking and times of stress. Consciously, they just think its their appetite that’s increased. But comfort eating is when you crave the sensation of feeling full even when you’re not especially hungry.
If you want to learn how to trick your mind into getting healthy, creating better eating habits, a healthier diet and more motivation to exercise this book is for you. This really is the first diet and nutrition book that looks at mental health, the only book currently digging deep on down into the psychology of bad, unwanted and unhealthy habits.