Tips on How to Let Go of a Bad Habit
Identify your bad habits.
If your try to list down all forms of bad habits, you will surely need more than just a piece of paper to write them all. However, you need not to focus on all of them. It is more important to become aware of your own personal habist that you think are no longer beneficial to you. Identify them so that you will know what you are dealing with.
Accept that you have them.
Sometimes, the hard part is to accept the fact that you are practicing a bad habit. It is understandable, especially if you became used to it for a long time, but there is no way that you can let go of your bad habit if you do not accept that you are practicing one.
Understand the root.
How did you develop that certain habit? Where did it originate? When did it start? Knowing this is a big help for you to understand the reason a certain habit has become an inseparable part of your life and as you sincerely answer these questions, you will come to realize the need that it fulfills in your life.
Set a goal and act on it.
After identifying, accepting, and understanding, what do you want to do next? Let go of the bad habit – that is your goal. Nonetheless, you need to come up with a plan on how to get it done.
When preparing a plan of action:
- Identify what you are and not capable of doing.
- When listing down the steps, don’t give the task to somebody else. Do it yourself so that you will be able to assess whether you can comply with the steps or not.
- Explore creative ideas so that the action is not very stiff; otherwise, you might end up being dragged down by your own restrictions.
- Don’t be too hard on yourself. Give some space and freedom to spoil yourself a little and once in a while, as a reward for a job well done.
- Being firm is different from being too hard.
Be aware of the triggering factors.
When you decide to let go of a bad habit, don’t expect that it is easy because from time to time, temptations will come knocking on your door. Aside from identifying your bad habits, you should also take time to think about the possible factors that can trigger you to practice an unhealthy habit. For example, if you are facing a lot of stress, you tend to bite your fingernails or chew some ice. Stress, therefore, is your triggering cause, so you need to name that as a trigger. If you feel like you are about to reach the danger zone, find some ways you can combat stress. Set a clear border line.
Stay disciplined and motivated.
Setting a goal may sound easy but achieving it is quite challenging because you need to go against your biggest rival – yourself. It is true that to meet your goal of letting go of a bad habit, you need to fill yourself with the right amount of discipline and anything that keeps you motivated.
You have to understand the need for change.
Yes, you do. Unless you thoroughly understand the need to let go of that bad habit of yours, you will not succeed. Understanding the need for change is the key to stay disciplined and motivated in making your plan of action happen.
Constantly remind yourself.
Let’s face it, we forget to wake early in the morning to do a 15-minute workout or instead of buying a healthy vegetable, we tend to pick up a couple of junk foods for a snack. It’s understandable, but it should not happen all the time; otherwise, a list of excuses takes over your plan of action every time you fail to stick to it. To minimize forgetting the necessary actions, remind yourself now and then. You can set the alarm on your mobile phone or write a reminder on your daily journal. You can also post some sticky notes on your door so that every time you go in or out of your room, you will remember the responsibilities that you have to do to let go of your bad habit. However, you have to remember step number 6: DISCIPLINE and MOTIVATION.
Don’t give up!
Letting go of a bad habit is not easy. If you have done it before and you failed, it’s okay. Try again. If you still fail, it is alright. Get back on your feet and start again. It’s not too late to live a healthy life and practice good habits!
Think positive! Believe that you can let go of your bad habits and eventually you will!