How do you break a bad habit?

  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Jun 13, 2014 2:33 PM GMT
    Do you have will power and self-control? Do you just go cold turkey? Do you taper off? How do you do it?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 13, 2014 2:44 PM GMT
    I think, first, you have to want to break that habit enough to be motivated. So I'd fixate on the positive outcomes of breaking that bad habit so that I'm driven to do it.

    Then having someone hold you accountable is really helpful if you are weak against this bad habit.

    I think tapering off is more practical.
  • metta

    Posts: 39134

    Jun 13, 2014 3:31 PM GMT
    I'm not sure. I don't think that I have any that I want to get rid of. How to stop it would depend on what the habit is.

    In general though, if I want to stop doing something, I just stop. Like when I decided to become a vegetarian 24 years ago, I just stopped eating meat.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 13, 2014 4:01 PM GMT
    I usually have the will power to just go cold turkey and stick with. The reason being is because its so worth it in the end. icon_smile.gif
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Jun 13, 2014 4:03 PM GMT
    I have a lot of bad habits. I've just gone through (and to some extent am still in) a very difficult time. I've been over eating, eating the wrong things at the wrong time, hanging out on line too much, *not* working out, smoking cigs (OMFG!) and just being overall lazy. Now, prior to this set back, I'd stopped smoking for several years (cold turkey, but it wasn't surprising I got back into it; I often do when I'm stressed out). I'd developed a lot of new, good habits, like walking a lot, working out, really managing my food, and etc.

    Now I have to find my way back to where I was. With smoking, for example, I have to be psychologically 'ready' to endure the compulsion. I learned long ago that its mostly just a 'thought' (accompanied by a slight craving) that shows up. If I don't give into the craving, within a short while it all just goes away. I 'forget' I even wanted a cig till the next wave shows up. If I just repeat the not giving in, eventually (takes a couple weeks) it just all subsides and seldom shows up at all. But, again, I have to be 'ready' to face that and succeed at it.

    Other stuff is just getting 'focused'. It is like I have to plan it all out bit by bit. I have to *think* about what I'm going to eat at what time of the day and make sure I actually follow through on that. I'm so out of whack physically from all this stress now it is going to take me months to get back into anything like the routine I was in before, which was very disciplined, actually.

    It also feels harder now than when I started last time, or maybe I'm not remembering correctly. Just don't know but it *seems* more difficult which is why I asked the question.
  • metta

    Posts: 39134

    Jun 13, 2014 4:06 PM GMT
    ^
    well, with the eating the wrong things...just don't buy them. If you don't bring them into your home, it makes it a lot harder to eat them.

    I'm pretty consistent. I work from home, so going to the gym is a good way for me to get out of the house. I regularly do 6 short (around an hour/day) workouts a week. I don't have time to be lazy. I have too many responsibilities to have that luxury.

    Working out should help you with your stress.

    Maybe some meditation would help you with your stress and thoughts as well. Insight meditation can help you to let those thought go.
  • starboard5

    Posts: 969

    Jun 13, 2014 4:33 PM GMT
    I've been wanting to get out of the habit of coming on RJ so much. Looks like today is a fail....
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Jun 13, 2014 4:36 PM GMT
    ^^ Yeah, I need to get back to my sitting practice. I know working out will help but I'm just so out of shape right now, not ready to get back to the gym just yet. I just need to start walking more. That's how I started last time, just upping my energy out-put little by little.

    Food is a whole struggle. I'm a sugar addict. Way worse than cigs. Much harder to break. I mean, yeah, 'don't buy it', of course! But I *DO* LOL!!! In that department I find that it is more difficult because the addiction is emotionally driven. I have to face the terror of not numbing myself with something sweet. Indeed, meditation helps with that. Thanks. icon_wink.gif
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Jun 13, 2014 4:37 PM GMT
    starboard5 saidI've been wanting to get out of the habit of coming on RJ so much. Looks like today is a fail....
    LOL, yep. icon_wink.gif
  • metta

    Posts: 39134

    Jun 13, 2014 5:12 PM GMT
    MikeW said^^ Yeah, I need to get back to my sitting practice. I know working out will help but I'm just so out of shape right now, not ready to get back to the gym just yet. I just need to start walking more. That's how I started last time, just upping my energy out-put little by little.

    Food is a whole struggle. I'm a sugar addict. Way worse than cigs. Much harder to break. I mean, yeah, 'don't buy it', of course! But I *DO* LOL!!! In that department I find that it is more difficult because the addiction is emotionally driven. I have to face the terror of not numbing myself with something sweet. Indeed, meditation helps with that. Thanks. icon_wink.gif


    I have a sweet-tooth as well. Low calorie Greek yogurt works for me.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 13, 2014 5:20 PM GMT
    Probably avoid trying cold turkey. It's really a habit as opposed to a hobby then it will take conscious behavioral focus. Small steps. Don't best yourself up it things progress slowly
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 13, 2014 8:53 PM GMT
    MikeW said^^ Yeah, I need to get back to my sitting practice. I know working out will help but I'm just so out of shape right now, not ready to get back to the gym just yet. I just need to start walking more. That's how I started last time, just upping my energy out-put little by little.

    Food is a whole struggle. I'm a sugar addict. Way worse than cigs. Much harder to break. I mean, yeah, 'don't buy it', of course! But I *DO* LOL!!! In that department I find that it is more difficult because the addiction is emotionally driven. I have to face the terror of not numbing myself with something sweet. Indeed, meditation helps with that. Thanks. icon_wink.gif


    What can be helpful too is substitution. Substitute sugary treats with something sweet and nutritious. When you're too full from apples, bananas and orange, you won't want to much on Oreo and Twinkies. icon_biggrin.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 13, 2014 10:51 PM GMT
    That which you resist, persists.
    Replace it with a new, more desirable/helpful habit.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 13, 2014 11:15 PM GMT
    I used to have to take valium every night to sleep and getting out of that habit was hard as fuck.

    Couldn't sleep for days.
    eventually my body just got so tired I started sleeping, but it tok weeks to get into a normal sleep pattern. Was brutal going through it b/c it's notlike I wanted them during the day, but at night I was feenin them to sleep
  • REBEL_YELL

    Posts: 35

    Jun 13, 2014 11:18 PM GMT
    You dump him
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 14, 2014 12:48 AM GMT
    I dunno. I recently quit drinking and smoking pot with no problem (no withdrawals). But as for other bad habits, not so easy. Maybe a 12 step program? There's 12 step programs for everything...even a *gasp* Homosexuals Anonymous. icon_eek.gif

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_twelve-step_groups
  • Ironman4U

    Posts: 738

    Jun 14, 2014 12:57 AM GMT
    The Power of Habit is a great book and will give you lots of info on why you have the habits you do and how to get rid of the ones you no longer want. According to research, there is a cue or trigger which causes you to act in a certain way (your bad habit) and there is a reward for it so you continue to do it.

    Your cue or trigger is usually a time of day, a person/event, a preceding activity, a feeling/emotion, or a place.

    For example, you may be working and at 10 a.m. everyday, you take a break and grab a snack. The cue is the time of day, the activity is you take a break and grab a snack and the reward is perhaps the snack and/or the time when you are goofing off/relaxing and not working.

    To change a habit, you must first pay attention to the trigger. Then see if there is a different action that you can substitute. And make sure that the (new) reward is important to you.

    It's a process of self-awareness, willpower and finding substitutes for current bad behavior that you WANT to change. I'm obviously simplifying the process, but you get the idea.

    BTW, often times, if you wait out the time when you normally go into default mode with your bad habit, the impulse or craving will stop. That's why, if you have a craving for a cigarette or a piece of chocolate cake, you can overcome your desire by simply weathering the storm and not giving in to your immediate impulse. The science behind willpower also says that our willpower is limited in any given day. So we are less likely to have as much willpower later in the evening than we might in the morning. We, essentially, become tired and give-in. (The Science of Willpower is another great book.)

    I'm a change "junkie" so the research and science behind this stuff is fascinating to me.
  • metta

    Posts: 39134

    Jun 14, 2014 1:33 AM GMT
    paulflexes saidI dunno. I recently quit drinking and smoking pot with no problem (no withdrawals). But as for other bad habits, not so easy. Maybe a 12 step program? There's 12 step programs for everything...even a *gasp* Homosexuals Anonymous. icon_eek.gif

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_twelve-step_groups


    After 75 Years of Alcoholics Anonymous, It’s Time to Admit We Have a Problem
    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/3681098
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 14, 2014 1:52 AM GMT
    As the saying goes "good habits results from resisting temptations"
    I worked on that...it's a bit difficult but not impossible. All I needed was a bit of temporary distraction until I fully came to my senses to resist my temptations without effort.

    This worked for me and I believe it'll work for anyone.

    This is how I got over soda/fizzy drinks, fast foods, Meat, etc.

    Traveled long distance, and there's more to cover.
  • buddycat

    Posts: 1874

    Jun 14, 2014 5:11 AM GMT
    By not doing it, whatever it is.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 14, 2014 9:03 AM GMT
    LOL since I managed to stop smoking just under a year ago I honestly feel like there is no habit I couldn't break if required.

    It's all about having the right frame of mind and not 'wanting' whatever it is that's bad for you. If you do or use 'willpower' you feel deprived and ultimately fail.

    Cold turkey is the way to go.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 14, 2014 10:55 AM GMT
    Did you use them ecigs to quit real cigs?

    I used ecigs and quit for about 5 months but now I've started smoking 1 real cigarette in morning, 2 cigarettes in evening (1 right before bed) and then my ecig in the day time which is all down to stress because I've changed job twice recently and found it all really nerve racking.

    I know I can quite again but to the fellow smokers or ex smokers how do you make sure that once you've quit you don't return to smoking? How ill I.got the first time I quit means I don't want to make a habit of starting smoking again and having to quit again.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 14, 2014 6:13 PM GMT
    I used to be a Diet Coke fiend - at least one a day... I stopped cold turkey and now I can't stand the taste of it. icon_biggrin.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jun 14, 2014 7:34 PM GMT
    Danny_boy93 saidDid you use them ecigs to quit real cigs?

    I used ecigs and quit for about 5 months but now I've started smoking 1 real cigarette in morning, 2 cigarettes in evening (1 right before bed) and then my ecig in the day time which is all down to stress because I've changed job twice recently and found it all really nerve racking.

    I know I can quite again but to the fellow smokers or ex smokers how do you make sure that once you've quit you don't return to smoking? How ill I.got the first time I quit means I don't want to make a habit of starting smoking again and having to quit again.


    I quit cold turkey man.

    You can't use anything with nicotine in it if your serious about quitting as your just prolonging your pain.

    The hardest thing about stopping smoking is the mental side of things- thinking you actually 'want' a cigarette when they are actually fucking gross.
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Jun 15, 2014 2:54 AM GMT
    REBEL_YELL saidYou dump him

    /thread LOL! icon_lol.gif