How To Fight Bad Habits and Build Good Ones

by | May 28, 2021 | Mental Health | 0 comments


Fight bad habits

Habit building is the process by which behavior becomes automatic.

Habits can be formed without a person’s conscious intention to gain them, but they can also be consciously cultivated or changed so that what you do better suits your personal goals.

However, the fact that habits are deeply rooted in human consciousness also means that even if a particular habit causes more problems than benefits, it can be very difficult to change the usual pattern.

The good news is, it’s not impossible!

When two “I” collide

You have returned to the “play next episode” on“Netflix” for the third time in a row, although it is very late and the next day’s work schedule is crowded.

You will break down social networks “just a few more minutes”, even though you know that there are urgent issues or there is a risk of missing the meeting.

new habits

“Just a few more sweets,” even though you’ve already had a hearty meal. A familiar story? Why is it so difficult to stop something that is not good today or in the long run?

The shortest answer is biology! Finding what is safe and avoiding threats and pain was a useful evolutionary strategy for the human species, that is, it helped our ancestors survive.

From the point of view of neuroscience, two competing “I” coexist in man, controlled by different parts of the brain.

The “impulsive self”, controlled by the midbrain (also responsible for instincts, including flight), wants immediate satisfaction, while the “smart self” – controlled by the medial prefrontal cortex – wants the best for long-term well-being.

When we want to change behavior – in this case, to stop something that is not good – the above parts of the brain interact.

In the following, we will look at several steps that could help on the path to positive change.

Become an interested observer and doer

Be informed and curious. First, you have to be able to critically evaluate yourself and honestly admit that stumbling blocks exist.

Become a careful and present self-observer so that you can capture and stop automatic behavior in time. Combine your awareness with a genuine curiosity about what is going on and the consequences of specific behavior.

Become an interested observer and doer

Awareness and an element of curiosity are key components in changing behavior.

Once the question of what habits interfere with well-being daily and can affect long-term well-being has been answered, a concrete action plan needs to be put in place – realistic, workable and detailed enough not to tempt you to interpret as necessary or loosen the reins.

For example, if the goal is to go to bed no later than one and a half in the evening, but it is customary to sit at the TV for a long time, it is warmly recommended to decide in advance, before taking the remote, what exactly and how much to watch.

Think about how long it takes to prepare for bed and figure out how much time you can spend on the blue screen. Set a timer to alert you that the TV has timed out.

We can do the same in cases where there is a nickel to bed before bed. One option is to brush your teeth immediately after the conviction.

If that doesn’t work, another alternative is to prepare some healthy, readily available snacks in advance, such as some vegetables or fruit, to prevent your hand from stretching for some unhealthy treat.

May heritage work for you!

It is important to set up a remuneration system.

Instead of seeing the only difficulties and whining that something seemingly important has been taken away, it is worth reminding yourself why you are doing it and, depending on the goal, focus on the benefits.

For example, instead of sighing sadly that the TV should be turned off, I should pay attention to the fact that I will sleep well, give my body the much-needed rest and feel even better tomorrow than today.

Visualize the desired result and spend a moment to feel the positive emotions in the body – optimally at least a few minutes.

Try to imagine in every detail what it will be like to wake up energetic and lively every morning.

Or, for sports or healthy eating: how has your physical endurance increased, because you can enjoy a longer walk, throw a ball effortlessly to your dog for longer; how comfortable it will be to unbutton the top button of your favorite jeans without pulling your belly, how good you feel and look in these pants, etc.

Allows positive emotions to spread throughout the body, experiencing the future today.

Sometimes entrenched thinking and habits have to be treated in the same way as caring parents treat a young child, that is, supportive, compassionate, but still quite strict.

Because there must be boundaries. What would parent say if a child wanted to go out to play but suddenly there was a thunderstorm?

I know you really want to play outside, but now we’ll stay inside because it’s lightning right now, and it’s not safe. Parents are ready to tolerate the child’s protests to do what is best and safest for the little one.

Strictly, but with love.

I know you feel disappointed. I understand. But we find something you can do indoors until it’s safe to go outside!

Undeniably, instincts have a powerful influence, but the ability to learn new things and take advantage of positive learning is also part of the legacy of evolution. Why not use it?

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