How to Stop a Bad Habit
Whether your goal is to give up smoking, stop chewing your nails, or get away from your late night food binges, one thing is for sure, it is going to require time and patience. However, there are specific steps you can also take to help you get rid of the habit that plagues you more quickly and effectively.
Here they are:
Step #1: Become Hyper Aware of Your Habit
You can’t change something if you’re not totally aware of when you do it. Therefore, your first step involves noticing each and every time you engage in the offensive action so that you can identify which people, events, or situations trigger it. If it helps, write down this information so that you can more easily see any patterns that exist.
Step #2: Create a New, Healthier Habit
Research shows that one of the best ways to get over doing something that isn’t good for you is to replace it. If you just try to stop your not-so-good habit, it will only leave you feeling frustrated and angry, so try to come up with some new, better habits that will give you the same effect.
For example, if smoking provides you a stress relief, you need to find other healthier stress relievers to replace it. You may decide to take regular walks, have a vent session with friends, or calendar in some down time so you can relax.
Step #3: Keep Your Mind in the Game
One of the most difficult parts of changing a bad habit is keeping your mind excited about the process. After all, you need to stay motivated if you want the old habit gone permanently and the newer, healthier habit to stay in place.
To do this, stay focused on the benefits of the changes you are making and don’t concentrate on the difficulties you face. Also, create visual reminders or cues that inspire you to want to reach your goal so that each time you look at them you are inspired to keep moving forward.
Bad habits may be hard to get rid of, but they’re not impossible. Follow these three steps and you’ll be well on your way to a lifetime of good, healthy habits. Habits you can be proud of!
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