This quote speaks so beautifully to the idea of how we are conditioned to respond with food rather than behavior. In other words, sometimes, a cupcake is the only way out, when really what we could be doing is speaking our mind. “No” seems to be a hard word for some of us to use. We have told ourselves over and over again that comfort can be found in the food, its automatic…. but maybe not.
To get to a more ultimate state of wellness, we must do the difficult task of examining our behaviors and picking out what are negative choices. We must believe that we can change.
“Much of our daily behavior is conditioned by forces deep below the conscious level of our minds. This means we are limited to a conditioned, automatic way of thinking and responding to the events of life around us. When such a conditioned behavior is strong, we think of it as a fixed part of the personality. Othello is jealous, Hamlet indecisive, Macbeth ambitious; that, we say, is their nature. To many biologists, this is something that is built into our very genes.
I do not agree. Jealousy, vacillation, competition, and the rest are not permanent mental furniture; they are a process. A mental trait is a thought repeated over and over a thousand times, leading to words repeated a thousand times, resulting in action repeated a thousand times. At the beginning it is only a burgeoning habit of thought; you do not necessarily act on it. But once it becomes rigid, it dictates behavior. It is possible, through the practice of meditation and the other disciplines, to go against these conditioned ways of thinking and actually change ourselves from the inside out.”