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blog  /  

Breaking Cycles

October 10, 2021

Last week, I shared how unwittingly perpetuating a bad-cycle caused perpetual failure. My hope was to share how dangerous and sneaky these bad-cycles can be. I now want to discuss how to get rid of them.

The key reason why I was in a bad cycle with my test grades was because I didn’t properly reflect on the root cause of my poor test grades. I naively believed that all poor test grades were due to lack of knowledge. But how could I have known better?

If the largest influence of your understanding of life is from your own experience, you will maintain bad-cycles within that world-view. If you consider the possibility that other perspectives exist, you will have a better chance to identify bad-cycles in your life and change your responses to turn them into good-cycles.

Look at the cycle I had before: Get a bad grade>Resolve to study more>Less time to enjoy life>More bad grades.

If we inject a differing perspective, it would have made a world of difference: Get a bad grade>Go to the professor to trouble shoot why the grade was bad>Resolve to fix the problems identified>See if next grade improves.

I’m not saying that going to the professor would have improved my grade. I’m saying that the good-cycle version incorporates a different perspective from an expert, a diagnosis phase, as well as a change of course.

Incorporating more perspectives into your life will help you critically examine your life as a whole. If you’re not getting results you’re looking for, seek help from people who have achieve the results you seek.

Asking for help is one way to break a bad-cycle. There are others such as shifting the goal to data collection, enforcing a specific time-period before making a decision, planning to start small before scaling up, etc.

I can’t go through all of them now and I doubt there’s an exhaustive list. But I hope, at the very least, I helped convey the importance of identifying cycles in your life. I hope you’re better able to reflect on the bad-cycles holding you back so you can create good-cycles that lead you to success.

Dr. Eric

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