"You are thinking the same thoughts, performing the same actions that create the same experiences that produce the same emotions, but secretly expecting something to change in your life" ~ Dr. Joe Dispenza
How many times have you promised yourself that you were going to change your bad habits?
Like no longer watching ridiculous amounts of TV?
Finally start eating clean?
Saving some money at the end of every month?
Drink in moderation or stop drinking altogether?
I could go on and on...
Your intentions are good my friend.
You want to start seeing real changes in your life... results you will actually be proud of, but those pesky bad habits are holding on to you like an ink stain on your favorite shirt.
Here's the thing: you're going about it all wrong.
Do you know what actually controls your bad habits? (Well other than you, naturally.)
It is how you feel.
You keep holding on to those terrible habits because of how they make you feel.
Adulting includes adult emotions...
...like worry, anxiety, stress and frustration.
It is in our nature to run to the stuff that provides comfort and pleasure from these everyday negative emotions we go through...
That’s why we look forward to the weekend so much!
It's your opportunity to indulge heavily in your favorite sins (not that you're not indulging during the week.)
So in summation, your habits provide the pleasures you crave for:
- comfort, relief, fun, excitement, relaxation, security... whatever you need to get away from the craziness that is your regular life!
Now here you are saying to yourself "I gotta change the way I'm doing things right now" and like I said, it really is a noble cause you have set out for yourself.
But you have to understand that your habits are like this:
This is not surface level stuff!
If you want to break your bad habits you're going to have to break the thoughts and feelings that support those bad habits.
How do you change your bad habits?
Create A Plan... YOUR Plan of how you are going to turn this behavior around.
1. If you are addicted to a certain habit that you cannot seem to shake, you have to start finding out what it is about this bad habit that gives you an escape:
- What are you running away from that you don't want to deal with?
- What is it about this habit that gives you the comfort, pleasure and security that you cannot seem to find in other healthier activities?
- How much damage has this habit caused you?
- How important is it for you that this habit must be broken?
Ask yourself these really crucial questions and be very honest with yourself.
The idea here is to create new thoughts and new emotions that are stronger than your bad habits:
Find the reasons why you really want to change and use the emotions you feel to drive the point further.
"I MUST break this habit because I just need to see this year ending with me having achieved something that I am really proud of."
2. Understand your triggers:
Your bad habit/vice/addiction does not tempt you 24 hours a day.
There are certain times, places and people that trigger you enough to put you at risk of indulging in your bad habits.
You must create a system that will interrupt those triggers like understanding where, when and by whom you are most tempted and doing something about it.
Remember, you can only control your behavior by taking control of the things that control you!
3. Find Support
The most important part of changing bad habits, especially really addictive habits is having a support system.
Declare to your "partners in crime" - basically those you indulge in these habits with - how serious you are about changing your lifestyle for your betterment and wellbeing.
Now you know the people you indulge with... you know those who will take you seriously and those who will note.
Turn the ones who take you seriously from partners in crime to allies for your purpose.
- ask them to no longer call you when they are about to engage in those activities that you know will tempt you
- tell them how important it is that they don't make fun of you for making these crucial changes in your life
- let them know that if they do not want to be a part of the change you are making in your life, then they do not have to be a part of your life.
There are people in your life who have been wanting to see you make these differences in your life.
Make them aware of the fact that you are in the process of re-inventing yourself, and I can assure you that they will be there to support you.
4. Reward Yourself For Every Milestone (no matter how small)
Whenever you have attained a certain milestone, like going a week without indulging in the bad habits and behaviors you usually get into, do something to pat yourself on the back for a job well done.
The list is endless! You can:
- meet up with friends and get into some good, clean fun
- pamper yourself (manicure, pedicure, massage)
- take a long drive or ride in your motorcycle
- go for a swim
- take a walk in a really pretty part of your city
Whatever it is that you like to do that brings you good energy, do that!