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Humans are naturally creatures of habit, and if you deny that, try and change up your morning routine completely and see how out of place you feel, almost instantly. Most people would struggle even just dressed in reverse order to the way they normally do.
Habits define how we interact with the world around us on a daily basis, and how we interact with other people. Positive, productive habits significantly increase our odds of being successful in the endeavours we choose to apply ourselves to, while negative habits play a big part in keeping us miserable and preventing us from growing and developing in the ways we really want to.
Bad habits encompass the realm of addictions — both behavioral and chemical — and also things like perpetual procrastination.
Since busting your bad habits is such an essential part of living life to the full, here are a few suggestions on how to kick your bad habits.
Switch them out for less harmful alternatives
Certain habits aren’t just bound to bring you misery, distress, and cause your life to seem far more complicated than it would otherwise have to — but will, in fact, potentially kill you.
Smoking is one of these habits, and by continuing to engage in it, smokers commit to ever-worsening health, sallow skin, and a massively increased risk of an unpleasant death due to cancer or emphysema.
Quitting smoking altogether can be pretty tough to say the least. So your best best bet, if you’re a smoker, might be to pick up a vape kit and look for the best e juice for your particular tastes, and transition over to that.
Vaping isn’t necessarily a long-term solution in and of itself, but it provides plenty of scope for quitting and modifying your behaviour. You could, for example, taper your nicotine consumption down with your vape kit, then quit vaping. Or you could vape 0% nicotine liquid, just for the mouth-feel, depending on how it affects you.
If your bad habits are really devastating, switch them out for less harmful alternatives, at the very least.
Adjust the resistance in your environment
In his book “Atomic Habits”, author James Clear makes the excellent observation that “resistance” plays a large role in our habits.
That is, people normally follow the path of least resistance, so by making your bad habits even just a bit harder to act out — and your good habits a bit easier to act out — you may completely alter your behavior patterns.
For example — sick of mindlessly surfing the web into the early hours of the morning? Well, why not switch your laptop off and pack it away at a certain time each day, no matter what.
Look for positive “keystone habits” that can offset the negative habit
The writer Charles Duhigg has commented on the concept of “keystone habits” — meaning, habits that have a powerful domino effect on the rest of your life, far beyond the impact a normal habit might have.
Waking up at a certain time of day, or beginning to meditate, or joining a dance class, may be keystone habits for you.
Always look for those positive keystone habits that can offset negative habits in a straightforward way.