Do you scratch your nails? Do you chew your hair? Suck your finger? Bite your lips? With persistence and the right mindset, it is possible to break bad habits. They are present in the daily routine of many people, and they can make you fall far short of what you could be. To put aside these bad habits, you need to create new ones, which will take the place of the older ones. Learn about the 10 powerful ways to break a bad habit!
Lack of exercise, smoking, nail-biting, gossiping. Whatever habit you need to break, no matter how difficult it seems, know that it can be achieved. You can achieve anything with a bit of willpower, support from the people in your life, and a realistic plan of action.
Studies prove that it takes two to eight months to build a new habit in your life. This implies that habits can not be broken overnight: this needs time!
1. Stop Procrastinating
20% of people are chronic procrastinators. People procrastinate because they struggle with self-control and they are unable to accurately predict how their own future will feel. They think they will be in a better position to finish the task at a later date. You could continue to postpone breaking your bad habit for another day or a week. Or, you can forget all the excuses and do it now.
2. Start with the easiest
Do not try to change more than one habit at a time. Start small, start with the simplest one. And instead of looking at your habit as numerous obstacles to overcome, look at it in its simplest form: a habit you want to kick. No matter what your goal is, create a series of smaller, easier goals along the way. Master one at a time and before you know it you will have kicked the bad habit completely.
3. Ask for help
Once you set your mind to stop smoking, for example, tell the people in your life your plans. Share on social media and spread the good news in any other way you can. By telling your plans to other people, you will hold them accountable and you are more likely to succeed in this way. You will be committing yourself to change, making everyone aware of your plans, and building a network of people in your life to support you when it becomes difficult. This type of social support network is critical to the process of breaking a bad habit, no matter how small the habit is. The support involving people who make you feel useful, who help you when needed, and share the joy of helping you succeed.
4. Set daily reminders
Sometimes all it takes to sabotage your progress is a lapse of memory. A habit is a habit because it is a behavior formed, which means it is etched into your subconscious memory and that is a part of your daily routine. In fact, 50% of our days is customary, which means that it is easy to fall into a loop of habit when confronted with a trigger. Hang post-it’s in your home, use a reminder tool on your phone, or download an application that will help you stay on track and remember what you are striving for.
5. Recognize your triggers
To break the daily routine of a bad habit, you need to know what is causing you to engage in the habit. Remove triggers from your life if you can, but it is not always possible. Let’s say you want to stop biting your nails, for example, you can not remove your nails, but you can wear gloves when you know you can fall into temptation or chew gum instead. Finding a substitute for your habit is a great way to stop the cycle, break a bad habit forever and create a new daily routine.
Visualize yourself practicing the bad habit, and then visualize yourself ending the behavior. Imagine yourself without the extra baggage of bad habit weighing down. Imagine the improved version of yourself, the version that is free of a debilitating habit. Imagine how it feels to be free of it. Watching your success is like showing yourself that all that is possible, all the power you expect.
7. Imagine the pain of relapse
Just as you can visualize what looks like success, you can also choose to imagine the pain of falling into bad or destructive habits. If you are not successful, what are the repercussions? Are there health risks involved? Are you going to disappoint the people in your life? Imagining the pain of relapse may be enough giving you the extra incentive you need when following with breaking your habit seems impossible.
8. Affirm positively
Positive affirmations are powerful ways full of tools to help you break a bad habit. Tell yourself that you are able to change. Tell yourself that you are worthy of change. Tell yourself that you are incredible. Even if you’re feeling nothing, but be optimistic. Affirm positively to yourself everything you need to hear. Say it out loud, write it down and hang it on the wall. If you are trying to exercise more, tell yourself that you are full of energy and that you are strong. Words are powerful: say it enough and you’ll start believing it.
There is a lot of energy in meditation. Breaking personal habits is a very particular process, so it makes sense that you look deep within yourself to find the power to change. There is no better way to practice self-knowledge than meditation. If you are a beginner, start slowly. Retire to a quiet place and clear your mind. Just focus on your breathing and begin the learning process to calm your thoughts with meditation. Clearing the clutter in your mind will allow you to connect with yourself in the way that is conducive to your success, such as breaking a negative habit.
10. Do not be a perfectionist
Do not be too hard on yourself if you slip along the way. Work diligently for your goal, but if you miss a day or make a mistake along the way, do not let it stop your progress. Calm down, relax, and know that no one is perfect.
You might have heard this before: humans are creatures of habit. This is true, but that does not mean that you are a prisoner of your bad habit. You have the power to change your daily routine. The capacity is within you. Get deep inside yourself and know that you are capable of many things. Use the simple but deep tips above to work through your bad habit and make it a matter of your past. The power is within you. Keep in mind that in order to change your habits, you might require the right amount of patience and perseverance!