A Global Positioning System (GPS) is extremely handy when we are trying to find a location, particularly when we are in unfamiliar territory.

We can drive while listening to the audio instructions from the GPS as well as view our position in relationship to the electronic map.

Wrong Turn / Recalculating

Even with our best efforts we can sometimes make a wrong turn as we are traveling down an unfamiliar interstate. The audio instructions will usually say, “recalculating.” Once the GPS recalculates it will show the revised directions to get us to our destination. It will also give us a new arrival time at the destination because of the added mileage for the wrong turn.

Saying Mean Things in Hopes of Changing Behavior

The GPS doesn’t say things like:

Come on, you have been driving for 42 years what is your problem?
You idiot, this is the second wrong turn you have taken today!
Hey day dreamer pay attention!
Can’t you follow simple instructions? No wonder your life is a mess!
You can’t even do two things at once — listen and drive!

Using Statements of Self-Love to Change our Behavior

When we lapse, we can recalculate by using statements of gentleness, kindness and self-love.

“Okay, I didn’t get it right this time, but what can I learn from it?”
“It saddens me that I lapsed. My behavior is bad, but I am a person with value and purpose.”
“Okay, so I made a wrong turn. Now I can quickly get back to my recovery.”
“I don’t like it when I lapse and beating myself up doesn’t help the situation.”
“What is one thing I would do differently next time I am faced with this situation?”

Self-Love to Promote Change

When you and I lapse what if we could say, “recalculating.” I’ve often thought about the gentleness of the word recalculating. What if we could use gentleness and kindness to change our behavior? Recalculating is full of hope. Basically it is saying, “I’m still going to get you there. It will take a little longer, but you will get where you want to go.” Gentleness, kindness and self-love are new ways to treat ourselves when we need to recalculate.

© 2014 Rod W. Jeppsen