3 Reasons Why a Bad Habit is Not Your Fault

Changing what you’re used to is no easy task, but here’s what I found out

Photo by Jared Rice on Unsplash

Every night when I go to bed after a day of work I look into myself expecting to see more achievements, growth, and the nurturing of a positive habit during that day in particular. Yet, it doesn’t matter how many times I write tasks in my 5,5"x3,5" hardcover notebook, which is my daily company, because most of the time I slide my way down away from them. It’s like walking in the rain of a challenging day on a slippery floor, where you do your best to keep your balance so you don’t fall. But then I took it open myself to find out if keeping a routine is really a huge challenge and why so many of us struggle with it, despite our desire of mastering the hours of our lives.

Truth be told, I’m definitely not a morning person, so waking up too soon with the singing birds as the sun comes out of its shelter feels like an unpleasant experience. Don’t get me wrong, it’s just that the habit I inherited from college covers doing tasks at night so everything is set and ready for the next day, in other words, going to sleep just a few minutes before midnight has been my routine for a long time. And everything you do for some time is likely to shape your behavior to be consistent with it. Taking it from there, rewriting your life style becomes demanding in terms of time, energy, and commitment, but just because old habits die hard, it absolutely doesn’t mean that you don’t have a choice to escape from their claws.

I’m doing my best to change my waking up time, and just like most people, I find it very difficult, and on top of this, there must a constant effort pulling you against the zone where bad habits live.

Why does what seem so easy is actually pretty hard to change, after all?

Thing is, it’s not so complicated to understand once you notice subtle influences permeating your days that, at first, seemed unattached to behaviors.

1 — Memory’s perception of environment

It’s a fact that a messy room influences your working habit, for example. I realized over time that whenever I neglected putting things away, my mindset went on “don’t sweat it, go for it only when you feel like it” mode. However, if I could rest my arm without knocking anything off the desk, then my working habit was way more assertive and powerful, keeping me from deviating and leaving what had to be done for later.

In a nutshell, making that extra effort to keep your place in sync with the mindset you need to get things done as you imagine is a must in a number of situations. So, as you can see, your own mind is working in the background all the time without you noticing it.

2 — The “that’s too much” approach

One more thing impacting your success in breaking habit is pretty much the defeat that we can easily shape where the finish line was supposed to be.

I mean, the most typical trap in anything we want to accomplish lies in the approach you choose when it comes to visualizing your goals, and I’m going to prove to you the life-changing difference in the way an objective is put before you mind.

Let’s say I’m sailing off to lose weight. As I’m quite the challenger, I want to lose 50 pounds. Therefore, the image of my looking at the balance and seeing that I lost that many pounds will the trophy I’ll place on the shelf of my mind until I get to hold it in my hands. Now, for some, it might seem too much to aim for right away, especially when you’re just starting off a new diet, and that’s because you’re right about it!

Now, it’s time to change our mindset to something way more manageable and achievable.

What if we choose to lose 3 pounds per week?

So instead of feeling like holding the big trophy only when you accomplished a huge change in your life, you give yourself the chance to enjoy the small wins week after week, and that’s how you keep yourself even more motivated. In the end, you’re way more likely to watch a healthy behavior blooming in your life. Remember that it’s all about how you’re feeling and progressing in your challenge, and these things can be very subtle, that’s why you need to be aware of them.

3 — All or nothing thinking

It must have happened to many of us, at least to me it’s been going around my days so often and barely did I know it. So it’s one of the latest things I discovered about our behavior and it fell right into place when in this article. Imagine you’ve been walking for 30 minutes every single day, and you’ve done if for over one and a half week, but then, there comes a day where life happens and takes that opportunity to go for a walk in one particular day. That’s when you being aware of the “All of nothing thinking” can save your habit shift.

The negative approach that works against you would be projecting your whole challenge and effort based on that single day when you couldn’t go for a walk, so you end up undermining all the amazing job you’ve done before just because of a single day. This is a cognitive distortion that should have no place in your life.

Of course there’s a lot more to human behavior than meets the eye, but applying the positive mindset now, getting in touch with a few more insights over how we can make the most of our days by breaking bad habits and nurturing healthy choices is one more mile in direction of growth.

Living these days while managing to hold on to great habit and commitments is quite challenging, and inside it many possibilities are meant to be found if you have sharp eyes to uncover the reasons why things are the way they are, because that’s the base you need to build lasting amazing achievements in your life over time.

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Daniel R Silva

Daniel R Silva

Copywriter with engineering background, but not the kind that blurts out, but rather the type that weaves experiences into juicy lasting ideas for you!

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