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Changing a behavior will sometimes lead to a change in attitudes or feelings, just as a change in feeling will sometimes lead to a change in behavior or attitude. A change in our experience changes our neurochemistry and ultimately our neuroanatomy. To paraphrase neuropsychiatrist Helen Mayberg, we can enter this circular highway from any number of on-ramps to get the whole thing to turn. Behavior modification is difficult because habitual behaviors are held in place by all of the above: feelings, beliefs, brain chemistry, even 'muscle memory'. Ever press the elevator button after it's already lit? Didn't make sense, but you just wanted to. Changing behavior can mean addressing any one of these "on-ramps" directly--or several simultaneously--to set up new habits. Therapy can increase the number of creative ideas for this change, keep the process honest and accountable, and help you with your self-discipline.


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Jason Seidel, Psy.D.
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