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How To Break Your Negative Patterns To Lead A Positive Life
A More Positive Lifestyle with Sylvia Browne

by Sylvia Browne

We’ve all formed patterns and rituals throughout our entire life, whether it’s cuddling a favorite teddy bear as we fall asleep at night or twirling our hair when we’re nervous. There are certain things we habitually do when we get up in the morning, such as brushing our teeth and reading the paper, and other things we do before we go to bed, like making sure all the doors are locked or keeping a glass of water on the nightstand (as I do). These types of behaviors are usually automatic and comforting, and they make us feel stable. In fact, if one of these things gets out of sync, we may feel “off center” for the entire day.

You see, we all have a spiritual center for our soul, and the patterns we form are often positive coping mechanisms that keep us in balance when something makes us uncomfortable or afraid. Some of you may remember a comedian by the name of Don Knotts, who played Barney Fife on The Andy Griffith Show. When he started out, he had such horrible stage fright that it was paralyzing, so for his stand-up act on The Steve Allen Show, he portrayed a man giving a speech who was so nervous he could barely talk, much less swallow. He twitched and jiggled, and everyone laughed because they could all identify with that phobia. Not until many years later did the public find out that this wasn’t just Don’s shtick, it was a real pattern that had plagued him most of his life – that is, until he decided to turn it into something positive. As he continued acting out his fear in front of an audience, his stage fright disappeared.

Negative Patterns and Bad Habits

Unfortunately, it sometimes happens that the coping skills we develop to deal with challenging situations are more destructive that the feelings of insecurity we’re trying to avoid in the first place, and then, because we live in this house or temple that we call a body, these physical patterns affect our spiritual growth. We may delude ourselves into thinking that certain behaviors are positive mechanisms, because sometimes there’s a fine line between a healthy habit and an obsessive one. For instance, it’s hygienically mandatory to wash our hands before meals and after taking a trip to the restroom, but what if, like a client I had, we feel compelled to wash our hands 104 times a day? Any action, deed, or emotion – even a positive one – becomes destructive when pushed too far.

Observe yourself and others as you reinforce your chosen habits with your words and actions: “I can’t live without my morning coffee,” “I have to have a few cocktails when I’m nervous [or happy or sad or whatever],” or “With my schedule, I need drugs to keep me at peak performance.” Statements like these not only program your behavior, but justify it as well.

It takes some time and definitely some backtracking to find the root or core of these negative patterns, or to determine when we first let them come into our consciousness. Many people in our society have developed the pattern of eating to comfort themselves, even though they know it’s destructive, because they feel helpless and trapped in their body. Others form a pattern of drinking because they want to be accepted – maybe it makes them feel more socially “in.” (And I’m not talking about a glass of wine at dinner – I’m referring to the folks who think they need a drink for courage or to get a buzz, and they don’t stop.) And then there are those who decide to smoke because they want to be “cool,” and just like alcohol, the cigarettes become a necessary companion. I’ll say here, without reservation, that with “friends” like these, you don’t need enemies!

Drugs, while more deadly (and make no mistake, they are deadly), have the same allure, and the same seduction: “I’ll be part of the group,” or “I’ll escape my worries.” Even prescription medications can be as lethal as any drug on the street when they’re abused, but people often convince themselves that if their pills came from a pharmacy, they must be all right. This is a fool’s paradise, because all these patterns are far more harmful than any insecurity we may have.

A less obvious habit that many people develop is that of being disappointed in themselves and beating themselves up. This is a behavior that may have started all the way back in childhood, or as recently as  yesterday – anytime your expectations of yourself were greater than what you could accomplish: “I didn’t pass the test, so I must be stupid,” “I didn’t win the game, which means I disappointed everyone,” “I don’t dress as well as everyone else, so I’m a nerd,” “My brother can do everything better, which is why Mom and Dad like him better,” “No matter what I try to do it fails, so I might as well give up,” and strangely enough in this day of heightened awareness, “Nothing goes right for me, so I must be cursed.”

We could go on and on with these mental patterns that take root, flavor our lives, and, if we let them, haunt us forever. Many times we make poor decisions in life because we settle for less, thinking we’re unworthy. But we must remember that these behaviors aren’t defects of our innate soul or self, they’re simply part of life in the physical world.

Sylvia Browne is without question, "America's #1 Psychic," an internationally known psychic and medium.

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By Linda, Monday, April 20, 2009 12:46:36 PM
Dear Sylvia, My daughter Jennifer has been struggling with bipolar all her life as well as Type I diabetes. She started smoking at age 11 and hasn't been able to quit. She tries, but gets frustrated about something and starts smoking again. She can't seem to go more than 2 days without a cigarette. She really wants to quit now and I want to help her. I started giving her vitamins B6 and B12. Is there anything else I can do to help her quit this habit? I love always and God Bless, Linda
By Catherine, Monday, April 20, 2009 09:14:30 AM
I've kicked the drinking problem and pill problem. One day at a time. Smoking is a hard one to kick. I have to want to stop I don't want to and other people telling me to stop doesn't help. Sylvia, I love all of your books and your webcast. If we have a chart to follow why are people running around telling people that they need to quit smoking? The drinking and pills were ruining my life. The smoking is not.
By joan, Monday, April 20, 2009 09:04:00 AM
My Goodness Sylvia! All these people wanting and seeking your help, how do you do it? Do you answers these pleas, you would have to do it 24/7 if you did!! My advice for everyone: read, read, read every Hayhouse spiritual book you can find and never stop for the rest of your life, Read everyday!! It will keep you going. There are CD's and DVD's of all these people too, a must! I take the money out of my food budget or do without something for a month just to purchase them. I promise, if you start doing this everyday and retrain your mind, you find yourself changing. You also could start a Sylvia Brown home study home and meet with like minded people to refresh your batteries so you can battle the negativity in your life. There is also spiritual groups on Eons,com that will help you. I'm on there allot also. I love all my brothers and sisters out there and if we never shall met, I'll catch ya on the other side. P.S. Sylvia's "Psychic Healing" is the best to battle illnesses, addictions and negativity. She will teach you techniques, affirmations, etc. Love to All Joan
By Loretta, Thursday, December 11, 2008 02:36:23 PM
HI Linda Albright posted November 26,2008 I too am almost 50, suffer from bi polar, chronic pain and type 2 diabetes. I too have tried to be positive and always looked for the good in everything. Every negative has a positive some where. I understand your frustration, sadness and yes, at times, even despair. The more one tries to make sense of things the more things do not make sense. I have realized today after having received an email from a concerned friend that some of the lessons we go through are for us but in my case and perhaps in many many other peoples lives it is becoming apparent that what we go through, even though we are going through it "alone" may in fact be for others. I stopped talking to God because it hurt too much to think every step hurts more than the last and God is leaving me here alone and confused to cope all alone when I cannot cope. Sylvia has been a Godsend in my journey for helping me piece together my own personal reality and try to put together the broken pieces of a mind, a soul and a body. My friends email was a Novena to ask God to help me in this coming year so I thanked her for talking to God for me because I could no longer talk to God myself. I thought and thought who I could pass on this prayer for because my friend reminded me by sending this prayer for me that even if I stop talking to God on my behalf I still need to talk to God on behalf of others here in need and suffering as people do. I really didn't want to talk to God anymore but knew I had to. So I came to this site and I read your comment and so now I know who I will speak to God for because you need me to. I will light candles to light your way and pray for you Linda Albright because you matter. Because God Loves You. Because if my heart is too broken to talk to God for me I can put myself aside and my broken heart aside and talk to God for you. Thank you Linda for receiving the blessings of my prayer and bringing me back to one of the reasons I suffer in this life. You remind me I am not alone. I am not the only person who suffers so deeply with these afflictions and so on my journey I will remember you and pray for what ever will bring you solace as I light candles and know that God does listen, God does hear petitions and even though I turned away from my own pain of rejection, I can turn back to God and ask for healing for you. You see Linda, you are the reason I will keep struggling to find answers and in that struggle we call life we help one and other. You brought me back to God so I can keep going too. Sometimes in this life we help those we don't even know just because we are. Not for any other reason but just because we are. If not for you Linda then who would have bridged the gap between me and God. I asked who I could help with this prayer if I decided I could bare talking to God again and I was directed immediately to you. Thank you for being Linda. As I light my candle for you I also hope that you inspire others to continue to hope as you have inspired me. Many Blessings to you Linda from Loretta Arsenault.
By Linda, Wednesday, November 26, 2008 03:17:44 AM
SYLVIA-Iam almost 50 years old.This life has been mostly negative no matter how positive i try to be.NOW I HAVE BI-POLAR AND FIBROMYAGIA AND FIND IT HARD TO SEE A LIGHT AT THE END OF THE ROAD......PLEASE HELP,L.ALBRIGHT..........THANKS
By Maureen, Friday, November 07, 2008 10:57:12 AM
Hello Slyvia, I have been viewer of yours for years, thank you for you. I am in state that I do not know which why to go.I feel as though I am alone and nobody to help. I help right now. I try to think positive. Help!!!! Thanks
By Amber, Monday, November 03, 2008 04:37:13 AM
Happy belated birthday, Sylvia! You're the very best!! I am feeling captive by what happened in my childhood and it's more difficult now cause I have my parents living with me. How do I let go and move on? I want to but I don't know where to start and keep getting reminders from my mom's severe denial. PLEASE HELP!!! Thanks, Love, Amber P., 37, New Mexico
By June, Thursday, October 30, 2008 07:30:14 PM
Sylvia, I have broken many of my bad habits , the only one that I am having a really hard time with is smoking. Each time I decide to quit, I smoke alot more. It is like my body is having a fit because I want to quit smoking. But one of these days I will win this battle with cigarettes.
By Vida, Monday, October 27, 2008 04:57:06 AM
Sometimes friends and family are hard to come by... Out here on the reservation Alcoholism is something that we all have in common.. it's a sad truth to have to face... and i know that it's like that on a lot of reservations, among our tribal people... my parents are both alcoholics, a lot of people in my family drink many have done drugs and been through rehabilitation programs but it hardly seems to work at all... it's true how many of us tend to use it for an excape from our everyday problems... i'm dealing with a few family members right now who are having a hard time and i worry about them... i drink as well... i was the kind of person who never wanted to drink... but since loosing my job working with children in a horrible way i just didn't want to care anymore... a lot of things have left me from my depression, sometimes i don't feel like the same person... i'm not that motivated as i used to be... i try hard to work on my music and my art but nothing seems to appeal to me anymore... i wonder about the direction in which i'm heading... i don't know if it's a phaze or what... i think i really need more positive people around me with the same interests that i have... it's really hard trying to motivate myself when i feel so i guess, hurt... i've come a long way in healing... i've been through a lot of things in my young life... i'm 25 years old going on 26 this December... i guess i'm just hoping for a better year... this year was pretty good but... i really want to get out there and get my passion back for what i do... i try to force myself to be into what i do but... i dunno... i don't know what's the matter really... everything just seems so different now... people around me changed as well... i guess i'm just looking for some positive influence and inspiration to feed off of... i try to look inward at myself, my own spirit and see how i should be motivated by my own soul and how far i've come with my family... but at the same time... i don't know what to say about all of that... it's overwhelming in both good and positive ways... i can't seem to keep my mind focused... i don't want to make a habit of drinking either... i shouldn't let myself go to waste... i don't know how to lift my own spirits sometimes... sometimes i wish i had a good person standing before me seeing me the whole way through... i know God watches over me constantly but... sometimes you just want to hear somebody say they love you and that they care and they want to really help you get somewhere... sometimes i don't know if i can do it all on my own...
By Ann, Sunday, October 26, 2008 07:37:04 PM
Hi Sylvia. Sometime I feel like I will never find love. Sometime I am okay with not finding someone. Will I find the man I will speand my the rest of my life with? Or is he not out there for me to find.

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