Why You Haven't Broken That Bad Habit + How to Break It
If you've tried to break a habit, addiction or pattern but have met with little success, it's ok. Instead of looking at the situation as a problem, flood it with compassion.
I spent years trying to break different habits. Whether it was quitting smoking cold turkey, walking away from toxic relationships, or ending my love affair with sugar, I learned that quitting is easy when you are truly ready; if I wasn't ready, it became a chore.
After releasing my old patterns and limiting beliefs, the "bad" habits disappeared. But if it didn't go away, there was a reason that behavior was still in my life. As Pema Chordron says, "Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to learn."
Once I was willing to look at the lessons I could learn, my bad habits and toxic patterns moved away gracefully.
Acceptance is the key; trust that you're right where you need to be in life. If there's a certain pattern or habit you're trying to quit, but can't seem to shake, perhaps these tips can help.
Change has to happen for you and no one else.
Many of us unconsciously try to change for the wrong reasons. Many of us are looking for acceptance, validation, love, or trying to change to make someone else happy. This never, ever, works. Changing for any reason outside of you will lead to depression, anxiety, fear and frustration.
You're not fully feeling your emotions.
Many people don't actually allow themselves to feel their feelings because they turn to toxic substances, drinking, eating, exercising, gossiping, sleeping, working over their own emotions. When we run from our feelings, they fester in the body and can turn into diseases and more ill will. Allow yourself to feel your feelings for true comfort and ease.
Face your fear.
Our fears can hold us back. If we worry about the unknown or possible future outcomes, we take ourselves out of the present. If you're trying to break a bad habit, but let your fear take over, it could run the show. Instead, learn to recognize your fear voice, the one that says you aren’t good enough, pretty enough, smart enough, talented enough, rich enough, or whatever else it says to you; give it a smack down. Once you put it in its place, your bad habits will naturally fall away.
Stop focusing on the problem.
We tend to focus a good deal on our problems. We think our divorce, our weight on the scale, our addictions, our eating disorders, or our bank account define us, but these are just small facets of our lives. They're not the whole of us or our existence. Stop focusing on the things you don't want or like about yourself, and instead shift your focus to what you love and desire for yourself.
Turning your attitude into more gratitude will help you in miraculous ways. Ultimately, recognize that if you have a pattern or bad habit that is still in your life, stop focusing on how you can't break it and it will naturally lose its hold on you. Accept that maybe it's not time to make the change. When it's truly time to break the chain, you'll know. Just relax into the moment, release your fears and surrender.