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Changing patterns

Problem: It seems like when the going gets tough, I get going. I feel so weak and unable to get it together. I have quit jobs because I did not feel I could do the work. I hate it, but I think I am a mess.

I always say this is the last time I quit, but it keeps happening. I didn’t grow up in a household that was out of the ordinary. Or let’s say I did not see it as abnormal. I am the youngest in a household of three other children. They all seemed to set the world on fire and here I sit with a poor track record and not much going for me.

I was a pretty small kid, so my family did a lot for me. My brothers and sister were always instructed to look after me because I couldn’t. Maybe this is the problem. I do not have anyone to look after me now.

Discussion: I will say there are times that the youngest in the family is catered to and they do not seem to understand how to look after themselves because they have never had to. No matter how you learned to give up, I will say you learned it and you can unlearn the pattern.

We learn patterns of behavior over time. That does not mean those patterns are set in stone. Our habits can change because we change our minds in regard to other choices. You are pretty hard on yourself and you seem rather fatalistic. You are stuck, but you can, if you are willing to work on changing, become unstuck. The question is how badly do you want to change?

It does not matter where we came from or what we learned along the way. Life is full of lessons and chances to learn new ways of living. What do you really want?

Make a decision about learning not to quit. There are so many good books out there. There is the Internet, and there are counselors available if you feel you need new ideas. You must put your heart and mind into change to make something different happen.


Decide what you want to work on.

Make a plan.

Work the plan.

Do not give up and talk yourself into quitting.

Enlist help if needed.

Learn to believe in yourself, because you can do just about anything you put your mind to. Self-esteem does enter in, so get some help with that part.

To submit problems contact Juanita Sanchez, psychotherapist, by email at or contact High Plains Journal.

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