Beyond Calories & Exercise – New Online CE Course

By Robert E. Hardy, EdD

Beyond Calories & Exercise: Eliminating Self-Defeating BehaviorsBeyond Calories & Exercise: Eliminating Self-Defeating Behaviors is a new 5-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that “walks” readers through the process of replacing their self-defeating weight issues with healthy, positive, and productive life-style behaviors. It moves beyond the “burn more calories than you consume” concept to encompass the emotional aspects of eating and of gaining and losing weight. Through 16 included exercises, you will learn how to identify your self-defeating behaviors (SDBs), analyze and understand them, and then replace them with life-giving actions that lead to permanent behavioral change. Course #50-10 | 2013 | 49 pages | 35 posttest questions

Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists; the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the California Board of Behavioral Sciences (#PCE1625); the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Illinois DPR for Social Work (#159-00531); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); and the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678).

This online course provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. You can print the test (download test from My Courses tab of your account after purchasing) and mark your answers on while reading the course document. Then submit online when ready to receive credit.

Robert E. Hardy, EdD, received his doctorate degree from Western Michigan University where he was a Mott Foundation Scholar. Currently, he is a Minnesota-licensed psychologist. In 1991, he co-authored Self-Defeating Behaviors (Harper/Collins). The book remains in publication, and is considered the classic work on why/how individual’s repeat negative behaviors. In 1996, he co-authored The Self-Defeating Organization (Addison-Wesley). This book applied his models to eliminate self-defeating behaviors to teams, groups, and organizations. Dr. Hardy became a frequent speaker on self-defeating behaviors – and during this time his weight was over 300 pounds. Lecturing on his topic, and weighing that much became a “marketing nightmare.” Finally, he applied his behavioral change models to his own weight issues. His current weight is 165 pounds and he has maintained this weight for over ten years. This experience led him to author You Don’t Know How to Change (Amazon and Kindle, 2011). This book presents his educational model of change: individuals first learn the models, then they learn to apply the models, and the desired outcome is permanent behavioral change.

Eliminating Self-Defeating Behaviors

Throughout time, theologians, philosophers and ordinary people in unfortunate circumstances have pondered the question “Why do bad things happen to good people?” While people much wiser than I have written volumes on the subject, I would like to propose a one-word answer: choices. Regardless of how “good” we are or strive to be, most of us will experience bad things in life that occur largely as a result of our own choices.

I’m not talking about the unavoidable tragic death of a loved one or being hit by a drunk driver when you’re obeying the rules of the road and minding your own business. Rather, I am referring to all the bad stuff that tends to occur, recur and build day after day—unhappiness in a marriage; obesity; depression; fatigue; certain chronic health problems; dissatisfaction with your job, your life circumstances and yourself.

Of course, no one consciously chooses these things for themselves. If we had our way, we would all have great marriages; boundless happiness; trim, healthy, energetic bodies; challenging, well-paying jobs; and loads of self esteem. Yet every day, people unwittingly choose actions and attitudes that work against what they really want from life. These actions and attitudes are what I call self-defeating behaviors (or SDBs). We develop them at low points in our lives and continue to use them long after it stops being appropriate to do so.

In abstract terms, your life can be viewed as a line with various high and low points, representing a variety of experiences—some positive, some negative. Positive experiences develop healthy behaviors. Negative experiences (including being held to the unrealistic expectations of a parent, rejection of a romantic partner, taunting by peers as a child) can breed SDBs, as we strive to cope with the stresses in our life. SDBs are misguided attempts to deal with those stresses.

For example, a woman who as a young girl was teased for being chubby might come to associate being overweight with the stress of rejection and associate being thin with love and acceptance. For that reason, she may choose SDBs such as crash dieting, binging or taking dangerous diet pills to avoid rejection. Certainly her longing to be accepted is understandable and her desire to have a slender figure is generally healthy. But her ways of going about getting both are all misguided.

Life today can be stressful on all fronts. You may be working with all your might to balance a marriage, a family, a career and social life, while trying to maintain a home and pay the bills. Alternatively, you may be trying to cope with loneliness—the lack of marriage and family—or joblessness and the inability to pay your bills. You may have feelings of inadequacy when you can’t have—or give your children—the kind of life that others seem to have.

All of these things can lead to stress, which in turn lead to the development of SDBs. While SDBs may be a particular problem for people with chronic health conditions, the average healthy person practices six SDBs on an on-going basis.

Eliminating Self-Defeating Behaviors, a 4-hour continuing education course for mental health professionals, is designed to teach concepts to eliminate these negative patterns. The course is educational: first you learn the model, then you apply it to a specific self-defeating behavior. A positive behavioral change is the outcome. Following the course, participants will be able to identify, analyze and replace their self-defeating behavior(s) with positive behavior(s). The course also provides an excellent psychological “tool” for clinicians to use with their clients. The author grants limited permission to photocopy forms and exercises included in this course for clinical use.

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