It’s Past Time for Change: 7 Tips for Breaking Bad Habits, Now!

breaking bad habits

When you stop to really think about it, how you spend your time each day is ultimately how to you spend your life. And your days are basically the culmination of your daily habits.

Do you have a few bad habits that have been holding you back? Bad habits are patterns of the mind, and anyone who has ever tried to change one knows how challenging and sometimes painful it can be. And yet replacing a bad habit with a good one has the power to transform your life, often literally overnight.

Let’s take a look at some steps you can take today to break those habits that are preventing you from being your best self.

It’s Past Time for Change: 7 Tips for Breaking Bad Habits, Now!

Breaking bad habits is the first step on the journey to your best life. Check out this post for tips to make change easier so you can achieve greatness.

1. Eliminate Triggers

Bad habits are purely psychological. The easiest way to train the human mind is through repetition. That’s why if you want to learn a new skill, the best way to learn is by doing it over and over again. And yet that is also why it’s so hard to break a habit because the mind is already patterned for certain things and not for others.

Emotional triggers make it difficult to break a habit because the habit often provides comfort. Stress and boredom are common prompts that lead to negative life patterns. This is why it’s vital to have a plan for responding to a trigger.

Keep in mind that triggers never go away. But you can reduce their seductive power by planning ahead and knowing how to respond when something occurs to make you want to fall back into a negative habit.

2. Find an Accountability Partner

Are you wanting to stop smoking? Or maybe stop drinking alcohol? Or perhaps you have some other form of addiction that calls to you on a daily or weekly basis. Whatever your particular struggle is, it’s difficult to face these kinds of challenges alone.

An accountability partner can help you to not feel alone. We suggest asking a friend. Someone you know and who you can trust to be there when you need them. There are also plenty of organizations where you can meet people going through similar struggles, who can sympathize with you, and be there to lean on during moments of weakness.

3. Replace the Bad Habit with a Good One

Often the most effective way to stop a bad habit is to replace it with a healthy one. When you feel the impulse to smoke, get up and take a walk or go on a hike. If you watch too much TV, go to the gym or get involved with a book club or some other social organization.

Good habits help rewire the brain, which is the key to substituting one type of behavior with another.

4. Visualize Success

Believe it or not, the most powerful part of your mind is the subconscious. In fact, nearly 90% of your life, attitude and habits are due to subconscious behavior. This includes your beliefs about yourself, the world, and the people in your life. And all of these beliefs are pretty much permanently set in place during early childhood.

Thus the rest of your life is an uphill battle against beliefs formed by the time you were twelve years old. That’s a big deal. And changing these core beliefs can feel almost impossible to achieve.

The good new is that the subconscious mind can be changed. And part of that process is visualization. The subconscious doesn’t understand language, it only understands images, thus visualizing the life you want is a hugely effective way to alter your core beliefs.

A great daily practice is to lie flat on your back with your legs out straight and your arms at your sides. Take several deep breaths. Relax your mind. The key is to unburden your subconscious so that all it has to worry about is breathing. Now visualize in great detail the positive things you want to achieve. You’ll be amazed at how this simple exercise can quickly impact your life.

5. Overcome Any Negative Self-Talk

Negative self-talk is another function of the subconscious mind. Regardless of what you’re trying to accomplish, the negative chatter will attempt to bring you down. Try to understand that this negativity isn’t real, it’s just the patterned mind chattering away based on past experiences or perceptions of past experiences.

The subconscious mind is incredibly powerful, but it’s also based purely on beliefs and perception rather than reality. Thus the best thing you can do when the negative chatter begins is to simply ignore it.

Ending the negative self-talk is also part of the path to finding meaning in life.

6. Plan for Failure

The reality is, replacing an old habit with a new one is a process. It won’t happen overnight, so don’t expect it too. Realize that failure along the way is inevitable. There will be plenty of days when you’ll take one step forward and two steps back. And that’s ok.

The key is to keep going, moving forward, rewiring your subconscious one small piece at a time. Remember that small positive progress is better than none at all. Just don’t let temporary stumbles sidetrack you forever. And keep reminding yourself that tomorrow is a new day.

7. Surround Yourself with Encouraging People

It’s hard to overemphasize the value of surrounding yourself with the right kind of people. ┬áBelieve it or not, not everyone will encourage you or want to see you succeed.

That doesn’t mean you have to eliminate old friends, but spending time with them while trying to shed negative habits is likely to impede your progress. It’s extremely important to remember that you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.

Find people who shower you with love and support, and you’ll be amazed at the difference this positivity makes in helping you become the person you want to be.

The Power of Habit

Breaking bad habits is one of the most powerful things you can do for yourself. Our habits inform who we are as individuals. It takes time, effort, and determination to break bad habits, and yet it’s something that each of us has the power to do.

Decide what you want, and make a plan. After all, becoming the person you want to be could be as simple as replacing a bad habit with a good one.

Click here to see 10 tips to become the best version of yourself.