Changing a bad habit can be difficult. It is called a ‘habit’ for a reason – it occurs almost unconsciously due to repetition. So, how can we change a habit that is so ingrained it seems beyond our control? Here are a few tips.
1. Set a goal – make this goal clear, specific, and achievable.
2. Set ‘sub-goals’ – smaller goals that you can achieve a long the way.
3. Make an action plan – what will you do in situations that challenge your resolve or when you are in situations that trigger old behaviours? Plan ahead!
4. Expect set backs – they will happen and they are not the end of the world. By assuming we shouldn’t have set backs, we set ourselves up for a feeling of failure that makes it easy to give up altogther.
5. Harness support – from friends, families, support groups, electronic prompts – if it helps, use it.
6. Don’t just subtract the bad habit – this will just leave you feeling deprived. Instead, add some new and more enjoyable habits to your life.
7. Reward yourself – for every small step you take away from a habit or behaviour you are trying to change, reward yourself – you deserve it!
Remember that you control your choices.
Good luck with changing those bad habits and please feel free to add your own suggestions or share what has worked for you.