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How to Break Bad Habits

This was an article I came across in one of the emails that eharmony sent me. Luckily, it applies to everyone, not just the single types that need help in the dating area. Or maybe that last part is just me…

So do you have a bad habit? If you do, I’m sure you want to overcome it, that’s why it’s a bad habit, right?

Nearly everyone on earth has a bad habit or two or maybe three that they wish they could do away with. So what’s yours? Do you crack your knuckles? Over eat ice cream before bedtime (oops…)? Do you talk too much about your self? Spend more money than you have? Whatever it is, bad habits area a source of irritation and annoyance for ourselves, and sometimes for others too.

(Keep in mind that this was written from the stance of kicking habits that may hinder your chances at true love, the main points apply to anyone though.)

Breaking old habits and embracing new ones may not be as difficult at you think. Consider these ideas as you move forward:

  1. Disrupt a well-worn rut.
    It doesn’t take much for your brain to fall back into the grooves of a well established habit. So look for cues in your environment that direct your brain onto a path of a bad habit. When you can identify a cue, you can change your environment. Either remove a cue or make it hard for your brain to follow through. Are you a junk-food junkie? Empty your pantry of tempting foods. Watch too much TV? Turn your television so it faces the wall. Disrupting an old pattern can make it harder for your brain to go on autopilot.
  2. Build on small successes.
    A single healthy change can create ripples of progress throughout your entire life. Did you know that simply sleeping 90 minutes more each night can not only improve your attitude, but also decrease your appetite and lower your chances of suffering a heart attack? Point is, that success in one area creates momentum that spurs change in other areas. If you can identify one small transformation in your life, it could lead to many more positive changes.
  3. Enlist the help of cheerleaders.
    Get a few friends or family members who are among your faithful encouragers and tell them of your intentions. Don’t use the Eeyores in your life, they’ll just pull you down with their pessimism, instead lean on the optimistic people in your life. Let their encouragement and enthusiasm inspire you to push ahead toward your goal.
  4. Get your ducks in the row.
    When learning a new habit, make it as easy and natural as possible. One way to do this is to get everything ready in advance. Are you starting a new routine of going to the gym in the morning? Then gather everything you’ll need – shoes, clothes, towel, keys, water, ipod – the night before so that you’re ready to go come morning.
  5. Ask “what?” not “why?”
    If you are procrastinating on something, don’t ask yourself, “Why am I putting this off?” That question appeals to your intellect, and your intellect isn’t the problem. Your intellect knows you need to be doing this project and that there’s no good reason for putting it off. Instead, ask yourself, “What emotion do I feel when I think about tackling this project?” When you can answer this question honestly, you’re zeroing in on the root reason for staying stuck.
  6. Summon up your spiritual resources.
    If you are someone who believes in God’s ability to intervene in your life (as I do) and supply power to overcome problems, tap into that source of strength with all your passion. If you utilize meditation, prayer, and contemplation as a way to focus your mind and dispel distractions, regularly employ those practices. Are you part of a church or faith-based group that can rally around you, then draw upon the inspiration of people who share your beliefs.

If you have a habit that’s holding you back and hindering your love life (or your life in general), then it’s time to get serious about overcoming it once and for all. Start with these suggestions and create a plan that will lead to progress.

How about you visit eharmony to read the full article.


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