Have a Nasty Habit? There's Good News: You Can Break It

Let's face it, we all have habits we'd like to change. Whether it be expecting dessert with every meal, sleeping later than we should or spending a little less time at the gym than is necessary. Yet, there is light at the end of the tunnel. If you've got a bad habit you would like to eliminate, it only takes 66 days to do so. That is approximately two months. According to Charles Duhigg, author of "The Power of Habit," habits are not inherent, we create them with what starts out as a "habit loop."

Duhigg states this is a three-part process that begins with a trigger to your brain to enable the habit to activate. After that, the behavior takes place, and then it becomes a routine. It soon becomes a habit in the third step, which is where your brain relates a reward to the habit. So, how can you get rid of one of your less-than-productive habits? By doing the same thing with something else. Although it can take longer if you have an addiction to a substance. So, the first step is to share your goal with everyone you know. The reason is that you need people to hold you accountable and add some peer pressure.

Secondly, you want to take an analysis of your life. Determine why you want to pick up a better habit, this makes the process a lot easier. After that, you want to keep motivating yourself. This is the time to pull out all the stops to make this happen. Lastly, you can embed your new habit by rewarding yourself. Share your success with your family and friends, treat yourself to something you enjoy such as a dinner with friends. Now, that you know how to break habits and create new ones, why not get started on one now?

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