Bad Habits – How to Interrupt Them

“Awareness is the greatest agent for change.”

Eckhart Tolle

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At the most basic level, bad habits form when we let our guard down and sleepwalk through our decisions. Bad habits always produce an immediate pleasure.  Our primitive brain is short-sighted. It only makes linkages of pleasure or pain to the immediate results an action produces.

Our greatest gift as human beings is our cerebral cortex, conscious brain. It allows us to make long-term linkages. All good habits are created by making a conscious decision to link positive actions with their long-term benefits.

The most effective way to interrupt a bad habit is to examine it on paper. Solving problems on paper allows us to examine it more dispassionately than we would inside our head. All habits have three elements; a CUE, a ROUTINE, and a REWARD. We usually cannot alter the cue, but we can replace our routine with something less detrimental that produces a similar reward.

We can interrupt bad habits using the technique described above, but the best strategy is to avoid forming them in the first place by remaining vigilant. Before we allow a bad habit to develop, we must associate the routine with the negative long-term consequences. Progress is always intentional, and it begins with self-awareness.

Learn more, Identify ONE Bad Habit, Interrupt and Replace It


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