They say that bad habits are hard to crack. However, knocking a bad habit from your lifestyle is not a completely impossible feat with following a few steps carefully, remaining patient, and staying consistent.
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Recognize Your Triggers
What events or circumstances cause you to resort to your bad habit? For excessive coffee drinkers, it’s the feeling of fatigue and the need for energy. For people that bite their nails, it’s a situation or a circumstance that triggers the anxious twitch.
Find A Healthier Alternative To Your Bad Habit
Once you know your triggers, find a healthier alternative to start practicing in place of that bad habit. While some circumstances and situations are unavoidable and could cause you to resort to your old bad habit, stop yourself at that moment. Take a deep breath. Think about a healthier way to cope without resorting to that bad habit.
If it’s biting your nails, try to close your eyes and meditate instead to stave off fear. If it’s a caffeine addiction, eat a healthy balanced breakfast with fruit, grains, and dairy that boosts your energy naturally for the day.
Seek Support From Family and Friends
Bad habits can linger for months or years. However, you can get support from family and friends to help you along the way. That little bit of encouragement from a trusted loved one could be what propels you to quell the bad habit faster.
You may not believe in yourself to crack your habit. Habits make you feel so used to them because you do not know another way to cope without them.
Receiving kind words of encouragement will help you to become more confident in your abilities to change your lifestyle. What may seem like a large mountain for you to climb can seem much easier as you continue to get support.
You can have someone work with you to minimize the habit just by receiving words of encouragement from them. They can help to stay accountable in quelling the habit. If you start doing the habit while you are in your presence, then this accountability partner can remind you of your healthier alternative.
Talk To Your Doctor
If all else fails, talk to your doctor for assistance in cracking your bad habit. Whether your primary care doctor or a psychologist, they can give you some pointers on the process to take. Maybe they are not the specific doctor that can assist you in breaking your habit, but they can refer you to the correct practitioner that can help you.
Going to your doctor should be a no-judgment zone. Should your doctor start judging you for your bad habits, then it’s time to seek treatment from another care provider.
Give Yourself Rewards Every Time You Quell Your Habit
Whenever you quell your habit, give yourself a small reward. Allow yourself to do your favorite hobby for an hour or treat yourself to a delicious meal out at your favorite restaurant. Developing a rewards system will make you want to continue quelling the bad habit so you can continue receiving the rewards.
This process is known as reframing your mindset. When you can focus on something other than feeling like you are stuck with your habit forever, you trick yourself into pursuing better habits to replace the old bad ones.
What is a bad habit that you wish you could squash? Recognize the habit, find out your triggers, find a healthier alternative for coping, get the support you need, and reward yourself when you make small milestones!