Third, develop a strategy for changing your behavior. Scripture tells us that we must "renew our minds" if we don't want to be conformed to this world and our old ways of behaving (Romans 12: 2). We cannot simply wish our minds to change—we must change them! Reading Scripture and other good literature, listening to uplifting music, limiting our intake of television are all ways to change our mind.

Fourth, develop a clear, healthy mind-set and behavior change goal. Scripture tells us the Truth will set us free. Propose to tell yourself the truth, ridding yourself of lies and distortions that create chaos in your life. Scripture and wise counsel will help us know right ways of thinking and behaving. Outline a clear plan for change.

Finally, develop an accountability partner for change. Studies indicate we are more likely to stick to a behavior change goal if we talk about it, share it with others and have someone who will hold us accountable for change. They must know our precise goals, including a plan for changing attitudes as well as behaviors.

Do you have de-faults you want to change? We'd love to hear from you.

Share your feedback or send a confidential note to me at TheRelationshipDoctor@Gmail.com and read more about The Marriage Recovery Center and my Marriage Intensives on my website.

Dr. David Hawkins is the director of the Marriage Recover Center where he counsels couples in distress. He is the author of over 30 books, including 90 Days to a Fantastic Marriage, Dealing With the CrazyMakers in Your Life, and Saying It So He'll Listen. Dr. Hawkins grew up in the beautiful Pacific Northwest and lives with his wife on the South Puget Sound where he enjoys sailing, biking, and skiing. He has active practices in two Washington cities.

February 7, 2011