Changing habits is a life-long process for me and I often fight against it. I must be single-minded in my pursuit of change. Being indecisive is not a good place to be.
I used to be a heavy smoker. I boasted that I was good at giving it up as I did it so often :-). I am pleased to say that I haven’t smoked for over ten years now. I gave them up “cold turkey”. There are many good reasons to not smoke: health; finances; being socially acceptable (smokers can be isolated and ostracized today); consideration of the effect of passive smoke on others; etc.
How did I do it and why? It doesn’t seem to matter today except that I made the decision and I stuck with it. I still get tempted at times but I just remind myself of all the reasons why I stopped.
I have changed the way I eat in recent years. Sometimes I am surprised about it because I actually eat a healthy diet (mostly) today. For a few years I ate a low-fat diet. I didn’t restrict anything else in my diet and I realise now that I really don’t like fatty foods today and they make me feel ill if I do eat them. I still like ice-cream though – I go for the low-fat ones.
I think it helps to keep it as simple as possible. I don’t enter into a discussion of “will I or won’t I ?”.
The one area I still struggle with is being physically active. Recently I had a goal to lose some weight for my son’s wedding and I went to the gym nearly every day. Since the wedding, I am less motivated to continue, even though I enjoy being able to fit into my clothes better and I know I enjoyed doing the exercise.
I did some study a few years ago and I made a commitment to doing at least 30 minutes of study each evening. I was able to meet this schedule with the support of my partner reminding me each evening. I had a goal to pass all my units and to get good results and my persistence paid off.
After I got my qualification, I still felt the desire to do something each evening and made a commitment to write 300 word stories, about anything I felt like. This was good practise for when the WordPress Challenge to write each day came along.
On reflection, I see that I CAN make changes to my habits if I keep them simple, clear and achievable, and do something small each day to reach my goals (it is critical for me to have a goal to reach). I avoid comparisons with others and can be pleased with what I do achieve.
cheers for now