I’ve been biting my nails for a long time. When I think about it, probably about half my life. Actually I’d prefer not to think of it like this! urgh. Like most habits, it’s something that I do unconsciously – and it’s been a lot hard to break than I thought it would be.
I’ve always been prone to low self-esteem and have found my negative thinking as ingrained and automatic as my nail-biting. The last few days I’ve been filled with self-doubt about my PhD (which I haven’t even started!). The weekend was perfect (awful) weather for staying indoors and finishing my one-page proposal but I really struggled to get anything done.
A taste of some of my self-defeating thoughts:
‘I’m not intelligent or motivated enough to do a PhD’
‘I will never excel at anything or be as excelllent as [insert brilliant academic’s name]’
‘I can’t compete with other people already doing work in the field’
‘My PhD will not add anything significant to the field’
You get this gist! No wonder I’m struggling to progress on my one-pager! I’ve totally lost sight of the exciting and meaningful opportunity I believe this is.
So today I’m making a committment to break this bad habit of negative thinking. Like the ‘Stop n Grow’ (yep, seriously) I’m using on my nails, I’ve realised I need to add some tools to add to my arsenol to banish my negative, unhelpful thinking. To this end, I’ve registered for MoodGym, an excellent, evidence-based online program developed by the Australian National University that uses Cognitive Behavioral Theory, to challenge unhelpful thinking.
So, Bad Habits, be gone!!