Suppose you want to eat less chocolate cake. You can put 100% energy and focus into this issue. You can read about the hazards of chocolate cake. You can visit with a nutritionist. You can keep the refrigerator stocked with vegetables. Or you can go the other way. You can recognize that eating chocolate cake effects your life in specific ways. You can accept the fact that eating chocolate cake prevents you from maintaining your ideal weight, or that it may increase your risk of diabetes, etc. You admit the various health issues that accompany chocolate cake, but you fully commit nonetheless. You decide that you enjoy eating chocolate cake enough that it’s worth the risk.
Either way works. Because ultimately, it’s not about whether you eat the cake. It’s about resolving your internal conflict, the one that spins round and round every time you’re in front of chocolate cake. Eat the cake, don’t eat the cake, eat the cake, don’t eat the cake . . . You seek relief from this constant tension. But relief happens when your behavior matches your values, and not a moment before. Change the behavior or honestly reassess your value system.