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Breakin bad habits

By Kathy Emiko
A habit is something you do repeatedly, over and over. There is no set number of times you need to do something for it to become a habit. It becomes a habit when you do it automatically without really thinking and when challenged about the habit, you find it difficult to change. You may even become defensive…..

You are what you choose: Choice gives you the ability to break bad habits. You always have a choice. You can be a lousy eater and feel dreadful as a result


of your poor food choices or you can choose to eat the right foods and realize your health potential.
Maggic bullets: You can create your own magic bullet for change by following these steps: –

1.   Identify your bad habits: To break bad habits, you need to first of all become aware of what they are. This brings them back into the realm of consciousness and helps you regain your ability to make choices. Grab a pen and paper and write a list of all the things you do that you know are not good for you, even if you enjoy doing them. For example, eating foods high in sugar and fat, indulging ice cream, not getting enough exercise, drinking alcohol in excess and so on.

2.   What’s in it for you? What is the motivation for doing something that is bad for you? Why do you do it? Ask yourself why you find this action so compelling. In order words what is your pay off for doing something that you know isn’t good for you? There is always a payoff. But is this payoff worth it? For example, let’s say your bad habit is to snack on several bars of chocolate a day. Okay, you get a quick comfort fix when you eat it. But how long does it last. Instead of doing any exercise, you get to slob out in front of the T.V. The pay off is probably that you get to unwined and relax. But there are other ways of doing too.

3.    Are you trading off? Analyze the trade off. What is it that you are losing by giving in to your habit? This step should be easier. Why is it that you consider it a bad habit in the first place? Eating too much chocolate is a bad habit because it interferes with your blood sugars and triggers mood swings and it also encourages weight gain. Not exercising enough is a bad habit because it makes you feel unfit and out of shape. In both cases you are trading short-term comfort for long term weight gain and poor health and well being. When you look at it that way, it doesn’t seem like you are making very wise choices, does it? There has to be a better way.

4.  Payoff or trade off: That is the question: -Now that you’ve looked at your payoff and tradeoff, indulging in a bad habit is no longer an involuntary act. You now know that you are making a choice every time you perform this action. So each time you feel tempted to indulge in a bad habit, remind yourself that you have a choice here. Which do you value more? Do you value more the instant relief you get from snacking unhealthy and sitting in front of the TV or do you value your overall health and wellbeing more? I want you to become more conscious and aware. Don’t go through life unengaged with yourself, mindlessly going through the motions and stuffing rubbish into yourself. If you make conscious choices then you will most likely make the right choices.

5.  Substituting better habits: The reason you formed your habit in the first place is that they must have filled a need. Some people say that they needed to be comforted, so they reach for food. Maybe you were feeling tried, so you switched the TV on for the whole evening. Make active choices to break those old patterns and not fall into the old action. Instead of grabbling a chocolate bar when you feel low eat an apple, instead of switching to the TV, go for a walk. Whatever the new habit is that you substitute is not so relevant, what is important is that whether you feel good about the choices you have made. Afterall, the reason you consider it a bad habit is because it leaves you feeling bad about yourself.

6.   It’s up to you: The only way to give bad habits a life line is to sink back into denial about why you have bad habits in the first place. Each time you begin to resume your old habits, the thought will pass through your mind that you are trading one thing for another, each time you perform that action. You will be forced to make a choice about continuing your habit. What choices will you make? The one that makes you feel disappointed with yourself or the one that makes feel positive about yourself? It’s up to you. To empower yourself, make the choice that you know intuitively is the right one.

If You Listen To Your Body And Make Intuitive Food Choices Then You Will Make The Right Choices. If You Eat 365 Days In A Year, What You See In Front Of The Mirror Is As A Result Of Your Choice Of Food.

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