I try hard to identify my most dangerous patterns of thought, but since the most dangerous ones are by definition those difficult to detect or apt to masquerade as beneficial, progress is slow. By “dangerous”, I generally mean the ones that excuse mediocrity. Procrastination’s thousand guises provide ready, accessible examples: “I’ll work on the project first thing in the morning.” “I’ll start the diet next week.” “I’ll get to that novel someday.” But the literature on procrastination forms mountains; I’ll refrain from adding my own crag today.
The dangerous thought I recently caught in one of its unguarded moments gets much less press than the p-word, but it’s similar in form and quite possibly even more poisonous. I call it the “Things will be fine when x” mindset, where x is any future condition or set of conditions.