Forming positive habits
Habit is a settled or regular tendency or practice (good or bad), especially one that is hard to give up. According to the American Journal of Psychology
Habit, from the standpoint of psychology, [as] a more or less fixed way of thinking, willing, or feeling acquired through previous repetition of a mental experience.
New bahaviours can be formed through the process of habit formation, habits often goes unnoticed because a person needs not to engage in self-analysis when undertaking a task
How habits are formed
Habits are formed through a psychological pattern called "Habit Loops". According to Charles Duhigg in the book titled The Power of Habit he made us understand that habit formation follows a three part process
- A trigger, that tells your brain to go into automatic mode.
- The routine, which is the behavior itself, that is a sequence of actions regularly followed.
- The reward that is something that the brain enjoys to make it recall that particular habit loop, sometimes we don't actually know what we're actually craving.
Breaking Bad Habits and Replacing With Good Habits
It would be fair to realize and comprehend that you don’t eliminate or break a bad habit, you replace it. Bad habits aren't totally useless because it satisfies a need in your life and for that you need to replace them with habits that pleases that same need or something close to it. For example, some people smoke cigarette when it's cold this can be replaced by drinking hot tea. Below are steps to be taken to replace bad habits and enable the formation of good habit
- Identify the underlying cause
- Replace a bad habit with a good habit
- Cut out the triggers as much as possible and identify a positive habit you’re going to do instead: This would help you deal with the problem
- Realize that your urges will be powerful, but all will disappear with time: Sometimes the urge might be overwhelming to the extent it might get you back to the bad habits but with time things would get better
- Plan for failure: A little slip can occur this doesn't mean you aren't making progress just pick yourself up and get back on track
- Be accountable to someone: When you get yourself a buddy to go on the journey it is easier as you know someone is ready to put you in check
- See yourself succeeding
- Give yourself time