If there is one thing everyone has in common, it is that all of us have some kind of bad habits. Undoubtedly, the best way to remedy this is to get rid of that habit. If we can’t do that now, we should probably aim to reduce the tendencies of that habit, and then work our way gradually to scraping it off our life. These are not infallible magic bullets to this issue, but here are my suggestions on how to go about doing it.
1. Set a Goal to Erase That Habit
It would help if you have the nerve of steel to stop doing something bad instantly – i.e. Cold turkey. However, most of us cannot do it. Especially when we have been mired in that bad habit for some time. But, it is very important to have a mental determination to erase that habit. Wanting to stop is a key step to the abolition of that habit. Have a solid and worthwhile reason why you want to stop a particular bad habit. Always remind yourself why you want to stop in the first place. With the right reason and will-power, it gets easier to continue down the path of self-improvement and recovery. Be realistic about ridding a habit for good. Kicking a bad habit requires time, consistency and effort.
2. Find Something New to Do
Find a new good habit to get stuck to. Find something harmless to do. Or if it is that bad, get something relatively harmless to do compared to that bad habit. Or reduce the severity of that habit. Whichever is best for you. For instance, a smoker can slowly stop smoking by gradually reducing the number of cigarettes he smokes. Or he can simply stop smoking cold turkey and start exercising more often, but he will experience some withdrawal symptoms. The point is, you need to replace that particular insidious habit with a new activity. It’s crucial because the time-slot left by that bad habit needs to be filled with a relatively harmless activity. Without this, it will be difficult to squash the bad habit.
3. Find New Company
Sometimes, we tend to do something bad when we are around wrong company. One indication of this is, that particular habit always surfaces when you’re around your mates or certain people. Alone, you seem at ease without the habit. For instance, you may find yourself being dragged to the club by your friends every Friday night, and next morning you’re always greeted by a massive hangover and an obliterated alarm clock. If this is the case, find new company. Or spend less time with the wrong company. Find new, better company which don’t indulge in that intermittent habit of yours. You’ll find that letting go of the habit is almost too easy.
4. Subdue the Withdrawal Symptoms
Seriously. One of the hardest things about kicking an addiction or bad habit is the withdrawal symptoms. I’d say, it is the hardest. Especially when the mind and body are so rooted in that habit over a period of time. Acknowledge that the withdrawal symptoms are there, and tell yourself the symptoms will go away with time. It does, and it will. The cravings we have for something is technically unquenchable, what matters is how we manage those cravings. Do we give in and indulge to the brink of our own destruction? Or do we learn to control those urges and take control of them? Surely, the latter is more worthwhile.
These are merely suggestions on my part. I’m sure there are varied ways to overcome bad habits or addictions for that matter. That’s all for now.