Make a Healthier Choice

  • Carrissa Pannuzzo, M.A., LMFT-T, LPC-T
  • Series: Dear Rosa

We’ve all got habits we’d like to change. Maybe it’s a disrespectful tone taken with a spouse or child at certain moments. Maybe it’s the tendency to go to things like coffee or the internet for comfort instead of God. We’d all like to make healthier choices but are often at a loss at how to change. Here’s a quick guide to use as a tool to help you break out of these unhealthy sinful patterns:

1. Present your concern to God. Ask for guidance, wisdom, and power. 2 Timothy 1:7 - For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.
James 1:5 - If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

2. Take a break and breathe.
When you find yourself in the situation during which you choose your unhealthy, sinful habit: Stop. Don’t do anything. Don’t react. Just give yourself a moment to think. While you’re doing this take a few deep breaths to calm yourself and let the thinking part of your brain kick in.

3. Identify and analyze. HALT!
What’s going on with you at the time of your unhealthy behavior? Are you (H)urting/(H)ungry, (A)ngry, (L)onely, (T)ired? (Think HALT.) Is what’s going on reminding you of something hurtful or frightening from the past? What’s really going on?

4. Choose a different behavior.
You’ll likely find with God’s help and through developing the ability to stop yourself in the moment - that choosing the new healthy behavior is easier. It won’t be simple but, over time and with practice and prayer, God will help you change your habits and tendencies for the better.