Why do we do the things we do (but shouldn’t)?

At the weekend, I was invited to a friend’s birthday meal at  a restaurant where everyone had a three course meal. It was a fixed menu, so I really had no choice but to order the dessert!

There were four items of dessert on offer,  I chose the waffle and ice cream (pictured, the other plate was not mine, I hasten to add) as the least detrimental to my health!  However, I suspect that as you read this, you are not convinced that was the best choice.  Neither am I, but I ordered it anyway.

Why do we do the things we do, but shouldn’t? Well for a number of reasons, which range from not knowing any better to simply being unconcerned about the consequences. Many of us don’t actually stop to think why but research indicates that when we think about how our actions relate to our ultimate life goals, we can improve our life’s satisfaction.

I personally think one of the most common reasons why we self sabotage is that we don’t have a compelling enough vision for our life. Because when we do, every choice that we make will be to serve that vision. I know that in my life, whenever I have had a clear and powerful vision (or goal), I make every effort to ensure my decisions  align with it. And when I don’t quite succeed in a particular area, I strive to keep going, rather than be overcome by regret.

So did I regret my waffle?  No. I enjoyed it, knowing that bar another birthday meal, in the same restaurant, with the same fixed menu; I would probably choose a healthier option. Or maybe not…..


3 thoughts on “Why do we do the things we do (but shouldn’t)?

  1. One of the eternal questions…

    I try to have a very clear goal. When an action doesn’t clearly help my progress toward the goal, I will at least weigh out the action. This doesn’t lead to perfection, but it does lead to far more good choices.

  2. I do this all the time. I know I shouldn’t eat the last biscuit or go full out and order the desert as well as the carbohydrate filled starter, the fat oozing main and the sugar filled coke, but somehow I manage to convince myself that just this once won’t matter. Except that every time is ‘just this once’! haha. I will make more effort to focus on the final goal of being slim and healthy because when I do that’s when I make good choices 🙂

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