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Impulsive Behavior

Impulsive behavior means exactly what it sounds like: acting on impulse, or acting without thinking. Sometimes acting on impulse means the difference between life and death. If you’re walking across a road and a car is speeding toward you, there’s no time to stand around thinking of what to do. An impulse tells you to leap out of the way and you follow it without questioning. Sometimes, though, impulsive behavior can cause lasting, serious consequences.

Think First, Act Later

When is it crucial to think before acting? When you’re:

How Impulsive are You?

Do you tend to think first and act later, or are you prone to impulsive behavior? Or does it depend on the situation? A few questions will give you the answer:

If you do tend to act impulsively, you might know that it’s hardest to resist your impulses when you’re angry. If you get angry enough, you probably think you won’t feel better until you take action. Gaining self-awareness may be the best way to help you cope with strong impulses that arise from strong feelings such as anger.

Getting to Know Your Impulses

Here are some ways to get to know your impulsive side. Think about:

Tips for Controlling Your Impulses

Do you have strategies for putting the brakes on your impulses when you should? Keep these tips handy for when you need them:

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