We all have bad habits we like to break. Well, I have the cure just for you! Okay, I don’t have a cure, but I do have an idea that may help break that habit.
Bad habits are difficult to break. They are ingrained in us through repetition and rewards. We know it is bad for us, but we still do it. We don’t even think about the bad habits that we do. It just becomes a habit. Part of our daily lives.
Instant gratification is powerful. The reduction of stress from smoking. The delicious taste of junk food. The numbness of thoughts, and feelings from drugs and drinking. It is easy to fall into bad habits. Much easier than good ones, which is why it is so irresistible.
What you don’t realize is what you are actually doing at the moment. The focus on the reward(less stress, sadness,tension etc.) is what makes us do these things. You must remind yourself that it is only temporary satisfaction. This is where mindfulness can be helpful. Mindfulness is all about awareness.
The process of awareness is heightened through mindfulness practice. If we learn to become aware of the bad habit at the moment, and notice what we are actually doing. This can actually open our eyes to the negative behaviors, and give you a new perspective on the bad habit.
I have a bad habit of scrolling online, mainly Twitter. I sometimes do it without noticing it, because it is so easy. But I always find a way to become aware of what I am doing. I take a step back, and look at things from a different perspective. I realize doing this isn’t productive, or benefits me in any way. It always ends up creating tension. So I end up closing the app, and going about my life doing other things that benefit me. I wouldn’t be able to do that without being aware. I may get caught up in bad habits once in awhile, but I can always find my way out through awareness of the situation at the moment.
Become aware of exactly what you are doing at the moment. How does it make you feel? What are your thoughts? Does it make you feel better? Does it benefit you in anyway?
The habit becomes habitual. We don’t even think about what we are doing. But once you become aware. Reality of the situation starts to seep through. You start to think. This doesn’t really make me happy? It is just a temporary fix. How is this productive, or beneficial for me?
We look for a quick fix away from tiredness, stress, sadness, boredom etc,. Not realizing the negative effects it has on us. It is just so easy to fall into the bad habit, so why not? Awareness can set you free.