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Unlearning Bad Habits 

Posted by Regine Louise Mendoza on December 19, 2022
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A new year is about to start in just a few days. Indeed, many people already have a new year’s resolution in mind. Did you know that the most broken New Year’s resolution is to drink less and to eat healthier? New year’s resolutions rooted in bad habits are difficult to achieve. Bad habits are already hard-wired into our brains because we have been doing them for so long it has become almost an unconscious activity.  

If you want to succeed in accomplishing your New Year’s resolution for 2023 or want to unlearn some bad habits, here are five things that can help you: 

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Know Your Triggers 

It is imperative to know what triggers you to make bad habits. These habits we have built over the years are most likely coping mechanisms for our numerous problems. Take stress eating, for example. Once you’re overloaded with work and highly overwhelmed, your initial action might be to grab a pint of ice cream, claim that you deserve it, or angrily munch on the nearest biscuit you can hold.  

If possible, try to remove yourself from situations that may trigger bad habits. Knowing your triggers can help you prepare and be mindful of your actions. Mindfulness helps us stop unconsciously reacting.  

Slowly But Surely 

With our drive to accomplish our goals, we try to do it the easy way. We search for crash diets, thinking it is possible to lose a lot of weight in 5 days. Yes, it may be possible, but it is not the healthiest, and the weight you lose is bound to come back.  

Try to build a sustainable plan where you can slowly but surely shed that weight off or permanently stop smoking. Give yourself enough time to break bad habits. Have space for mistakes and relapses, and reward yourself for every milestone. Once you went for a week without overeating, get a much-deserved pedicure. Then after a month, go on a weekend trip. These rewards will keep you motivated to unlearn your bad habits. 

Build New Good Habits 

The most helpful way to unlearn bad habits is to replace them with good habits. Habits, in general, are compelling as they are unconscious. Building good habits will help you in the long run. Try breathing exercises every time you feel anxious instead of biting your fingernails. Create a meaningful routine where you get to exercise daily and eat healthily. Once you follow a daily routine made up of a combination of good habits, you’ll be much healthier in just a month. Our entire lifestyle is composed of different habits, so it is safe to say that good habits are essential to a much healthier lifestyle. 

Have an Accountability Buddy 

Within your set of friends or family, most likely, a few want to unlearn some bad habits as well. Rope them in your journey and partner up with them. Try to update each other on your progress and seek their opinions. Remind each other of your ultimate goal and call each other out if needed. An accountability buddy can help you feel more motivated as you won’t be alone.  

Document Your Progress 

Day to day, there may not be much difference in your progress, but once you look back in a month or two, you’ll see how far you’ve come. Make sure to document your progress to show evidence of your hard work. Seeing how far you’ve come will only motivate you better to go further.  

The most crucial thing in unlearning a bad habit is that you must want it for yourself. You have to know why you’re doing it and what you want your end goal to be. If you feel unlearning your bad habits is impossible, you can consult a life coach or a doctor to help you plan the healthiest course of action. Best of luck with your new year!  

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