Breaking Bad Habits
How long does it take to break a bad habit?
ANSWER: Sadly for those of us trying to do this it can take anything from 20 to 300 days.
Why is this so? as somone famous is prone to say.
Socrates would say that… to himself and to his students. Examine, discover, understand… use the information to help you live a better life.
A few hints to help you through this process.
Resources abound. Use your therapy and your therapist to help you. Listen to their conversation. Your therapist or counsellor is there to USE. They will actively aid you to come to realisations that help you break old habits
Childhood experiences. Habits are hard to break because there is a real possibility you have doing this thing for many years. Probably this habit (or the reasons for this habit forming) you are trying to break was formed when you were a child.
Work you say? Make the former point a plus: THIS IS HARD WORK. You will need all the help you can get. Use your friends, collegues, family to assist you. ASK FOR THEIR HELP.
Your needs rule you. If it is true (and many scientists and neuroscientists think this) that your habits are a response to some physical or psychological need, then there is a requirement that that need is discovered and examined and dealt with in a positive way. For instance: Do you really need this thing?
Is there a substitute? Can you find another way of fulfilling this need that helps you move forward? You want a new music CD to add to your collection? Look at what you already have and see if there are is some music you already have that you have not listened to for a while.
That is a simple example and does not tackle the larger issues… food, alcohol, drug, sex… that is why you may need professional help… help you can’t give yourself.
Finding peace and happiness. In the end, if your habits are designed to comfort and pacify your cravings, you can try to find radically different ways to be satisfied. This may mean examining globally. Looking at your whole life, sense-of-self, life goals, expectations and disappointments.
Are you moved by how other see you or by internal processes, ethics and beliefs? If it is the former then you are forever at the whim of others and will probably be chasing the approval of people who may change their mind in an instance.
Fashion changes with the seasons. Fashion house change how clothes look and promote that change so you will go and buy new clothes every season or year.
CHANGE THAT HABIT… only buy classic style clothes and shoes. They will never go out of fashion and each year you can replace worn out clothes and update by adding a couple of accessories, scarves, ties or shirt, blouse… and you will always look “classy.”