How to Get Rid of Bad Habits in Our Lives?
Habits are formed since our early childhood and remain like that until we try hard to change or get rid of them. It might look funny but it is a fact that many adults fight relentlessly to win over some of their bad habits but alas, they do not succeed commensurate to their efforts. Why it is so and what are the main reasons for these evils to stay permanently inside us is a matter to ponder and riddle to unravel.
Count your bad habits
We all have bad habits. Nothing to shy of that. Can you honestly count your bad habits?
Anatomy of bad habits
The origin of bad habits can be attributable to the bringing up, society, friends, heridity (?), poverty and other factors like that. The strange thing about bad habits is that we do not know when did we acquire them. It is a smooth and silent entry of vices in our personality that we ourselves are oblivious of. Another bad news is that they enter there to remain for long like a unsolicited fatal disease in our body. They not only stay there for long but also affect and modulate our behaviour and mannerism in myriads of ways.
Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.
- Mahatma Gandhi
Can we change them?
Changing bad habits is a stressful task. One has to fight with oneself and one only gets torn in that process. Changing them is a tedious and lengthy process and requires patience and prudence. Old habits die hard. They do not go so easily. The process of removing them brings a strain on the individual and many times in failing to do so, one falls in the trap of self pity and self humiliation.
Desire to change
Have you got a strong desire to change your bad habits or you feel that let life go like that only?
Are there any methods to change bad habits?
There are no easy methods to change or eradicate the bad habits. Some scholars believe that this can be achieved with will power and determination. To some extent we can agree with that view but the very question which comes in our minds is that an average person is the slave of his habits and from where he would bring courage and bravery to fight with them. So in essence it is a herculean task asking for a lot of self control and thoughtfulness in eradicating these evils from our lives.
What is the way out?
There are some trchniques which people follow and get positive results when it comes to taming oneself to remain in cleaner and positive territories in our lives. One can adopt or follow these in fighting with the bad habits and charting a path for winning over them one by one.
- Diverting mind to creative activities - Every person has a hidden artist inside him. He can definitely create something if he is able to realise his potential. Creativity is a great tool to kill many vices in our lives. A lazy person can become highly engaged in dealing with his or her creation. I know a doctor who had a great interest in music snd singing but he did not get much time during his active service. After his supranuation from his active service, he started to pursue his passion and today he is happy with his musical engagements. His mind remains focussed in pursuing his good hobbies. It greatly helps in avoiding distractions.
- Controlling the frequency - Bad habits are very stubborn. They will surface out time and again. One has to keep a tab on the frequency of these vices. Gradual reduction in frequency is itself a sign of improvement. One of my colleague was very abusive and others felt offended by his behaviour. This friend himself was concerned about his problem and wanted to get rid of them. He went to a psychology consultant who advised him to reduce the frequevcy of those outbursts. He tried to control it and after some time was able to bring down the frequency of abusing to much less than earlier. No one noticed it but he knew the difference. He was excited to see this achievement. It encouraged him to try further and reduce the abusive offences to bare minimum.
- Rewarding oneself after correction - It is difficult to change but even if you move an inch ahead reward yourself with some indulgence by breaking the schedule or discipline. Every time you progress, your mind will have an expectation of reward. Sometimes the lure of reward works in our lives.
- Socialising in one's spare time - Evil thoughts and bad habits surround us when we are alone. It is better to be with friends and like minded people which gives us enough strength to fight with these vices and refrain from them. Many people have benefited by this. It is worth trying.
- Adopt Yoga and meditation - Stress is the most conducive enviroment for bad habits. We tend to the ways of inferior world when we are in grief and melancholy. Reducing stress is definitely a good attempt in this direction. Yoga and meditation are useful in many ways to us. They help us in increasing our inner strength to fight with all sort of evils including bad habits.
Changing bad habits is a big challenge in our lives. It is difficult but not impossible. One has to try different techniques and methods and even a small achievement in this is a matter of great satisfaction and brings experience and encouragement for more self-reforms.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Umesh Chandra Bhatt