Conflicting Desires

- POSTED ON: Aug 25, 2013


In life we often experience multiple wants and desires. Frequently these desires are incompatible with each other and, even worse, sometimes we make decisions that result in neither one of our desires getting fulfilled. 

Self-sabotage can be the result of conflicting desires, where a person has two (sometimes more) desires that are incompatible with each other. Fulfilling one of these desires means losing out on the other. This often involves two or more conflicting goals, often one being a short term goal (like the desire to overeat) and the other being a long term goal (like wanting a "normal" bodysize).

The short term goal often tends to win out, however, because the behavior supporting that goal feels more immediately satisfying, while the behavior supporting that more distant, long-term goal seems more difficult. Yet, in the long run choosing short term goals over long term goals leads us down that path in life of "how did I end up here?"

Sometimes just taking even a brief moment to think about the conflicting desires present within us can help us avoid self-sabotage. Calmly accepting and considering each desire before acting, knowing that we always have a choice, can help reduce the inner fighting and make that battle easier.

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