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5 Ways To Break A Bad Habit

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Research shows it takes 66 days to break a habit. So, if you’ve ever tried to break a habit and failed, it could be because you gave up too soon. Maybe you felt you just didn’t have the will power to overcome the habit, when all you really needed was to persevere just a few more days.

Bad habits are formed when something triggers a behavior you keep repeating over and over, like eating when you are stressed and wishing you would have stopped before you ate too much. It’s not impossible to break a bad habit and form a good once it is placed by following five easy steps:

5 Ways To Break A Bad Habit
  1. Reward – In order for bad habits to form, you must be getting some reward or gratification. Therefore, if you change the reward to something more positive when you don’t follow through on a bad habit, you may be able to give yourself the incentive to stop repeating it. Make the reward for not giving into the bad habit greater than the reward for continuing to do it.
  2. Routine – When you repeat a behavior over and over, it becomes routine and automatic. Once the behavior reaches the point of being routine or automatic, it is harder to break or change. You can also apply this to changing the bad habit to a good one. By continuing to repeat a good habit, it will become routine and automatic, and you will find yourself letting go of the bad habit you once had.
  3. Reflection – It’s usually pretty obvious which bad habits need work and which are causing us the most problems. Look within and see what behaviors or thoughts may be triggering bad habits. If you have a bad habit of speeding to work look to see what adjustments you need to make to change that habit. It may be a little difficult at first to change the habit of always leaving for work late and needing to speed, but once you start making it a routine of leaving the house early, it will eventually become a habit.
  4. Accountability – In order to be effective in breaking bad habits, it is crucial to have accountability. Find someone you can confide in and let them know you are working on breaking a bad habit. Inform them of your progress. If you start to regress into the old bad habit again, have them call you out. Knowing you have someone you must be accountable to can help give you more of an incentive to stay on the right track and make improvements.
  5. Positivity – Know that if you slip a couple of times, you are not weak or lazy. Breaking a bad habit can be challenging for anyone. Simply focus on never giving up and always keep trying. The longer you give yourself to keep trying, the more likely your chances are of breaking a bad habit.

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