How to change bad habits in 5 steps.
"'It's easier to prevent bad habits than to change them."
This year I decided to be a bit of a bastard ... I waited 3 full weeks before publishing this article, because statistically this is the duration of our good resolutions for the beginning of the year.
Who knows, maybe you have managed to have more self-discipline and willpower, yet ... I have a vague suspicion that you are right there to give up, to throw in the towel and get back to your bad habits.
Well, then I hope to have arrived just in time here 5 practical steps to permanently quit your bad habits and finally start to change your life.
1. Choose what you really want
As often happens in life, even the bad habits they are there for a reason, a very specific reason: they serve to fill a void. When we feel bored, sad and unmotivated, we go in a painful and compulsive search for pleasure, often at the expense of our long-term happiness.
To break this vicious circle we must first make a decision: choose what we really want.
Phrases like "be happier", "get back in shape" or "have more money" are as generic as they are useless. Learn to define your goals: choose specific goals, measurable, ambitious (but not too much), and with a well-defined deadline.
2. Find the right reasons
Often have a splendid one obiettivo it is not enough. In fact, a goal is only a goal to reach, without petrol you can't go anywhere: if you are not sufficiently motivated to change, you will find yourself "broken down" at the first lay-by ... or in the third week of January.
When choosing what you really want, when setting your change goal, always ask yourself ... because.
Why do you want to change? Why is your current situation so painful? Why do you want to reach your goal? Because? Because? Because? It must be an obsession: if you are unable to find the right ones reasons for change, you will never have the strength to counteract the inertia of the status quo.
3. Replace bad habits
As mentioned in point 1, bad habits are there to fill a void: if you try to eliminate them, without replacing them with good habits, the void will overwhelm your willpower, and you will be back to square one in a few weeks.
When you decide to drop one bad habit, decide immediately how you intend to replace it. Bad habits are often linked to specific times of the day or psychological triggers: if you are able to anticipate these mechanisms, replacing your bad habit will be a breeze.
Can't you do without a cigarette after meals? Try brushing your teeth instead. Do you check your mailbox first thing when you wake up? Instead, try wearing running shoes and going out for a morning run. The examples are endless, but you have to be smart: use pleasure to your advantageDon't just replace your bad habit with a good one, think of something that will give you tremendous pleasure and satisfaction. A good habit is a good habit, not because you find it on Men's Health or Donna Moderna, but because it makes you feel good in the long term and helps to consolidate your self-esteem.
4. Help yourself that god helps you
Your bad habits are bastards, but you can be more of a bastard than them.
When you want to get rid of a bad habit you must have awareness. The first few weeks will be tough: certain habits are so ingrained in your life that you don't even notice you're putting them into action. To become aware you have to make those changes that help you stop the automatic mechanisms.
Do you want to eliminate caffeine from your life? Do not buy the coffee and move the last package left to a different drawer than usual: when, still stunned by sleep, you will be forced to think about where the coffee has gone, you will have earned that essential second stop automatic mechanism of the morning cup of coffee. This type of trick is applicable to any bad habit: change the cards and you'll be able to fight your bad habits on equal terms.
5. If you fall… stand up
Imagine how much time your bad habit had to form: don't blame yourself if you can't leave it overnight.
As Gurdjieff understood very well, everything in life follows cycles: growth and decrease, inhalation and exhalation, high and low, etc. If you fall back into your bad habits, don't make a fuss of it: take note of the momentary stop, get up and resume your path of personal growth.
You know the training scenes of the most famous action films (rocky, matrix, etc.): they last between 2-5 minutes, there is always ultra-motivating background music, and in the end the hero of the moment becomes a kind of superman. Well guess what, life doesn't work like that: it will take weeks, or perhaps months, to achieve appreciable results, you will not always have a mentor or a coach ready to push you, but above all ... forget the ultra-motivating music!
Yet… using the right strategies, you can do it, as hundreds of people have done before you. You don't want to tell me that I have soft food among my readers ?!
Have a nice week, I'm sure it will be! ;-)