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A Beginner's Guide to Breaking Up With Bad Habits

If you're here, chances are you're human (unless you're a bot; in that case, hello AI!) and, as a fully functioning human, you're likely wrestling with a pesky habit or two that's overstayed its welcome.

Whether you're scrolling Instagram like a hypnotized zombie, scarfing down donuts during your morning commute, or reaching for a vape at every stressful email notification, let me assure you - you're not alone. 

While on the surface it may seem simple to “not do the thing,” the reality is that bad habits tend to stick around, unless we commit to learning how we fall into these habit traps – and how to escape them.   

Decoding Bad Habits

Bad habits are sneaky. Most of the time, they come into our lives wearing disguises, pretending to meet some unmet need. Picture this: someone's just experienced a breakup. They wake up feeling a little lost and a little alone. They reach for their phone, thumbing through Instagram, subconsciously seeking a semblance of connection.

Fast forward six months, they're still spending their mornings lost in the infinite scroll, clueless about the origin of this time-consuming habit.

Bad habits often start as harmless stress-relievers, or to alleviate boredom. When we dig deeper, we often find these habits might be tangled up with past events, fears, or insecurities.

The first step is to acknowledge the habit and it’s source. Take a few days to track the pattern, the triggers, and the frequency of the habit. Then, as you peel back these layers, you can apply these tips to kick that habit to the curb, once and for all.

4 Steps To Say Bye-bye To Bad Habits

1. Don't Just Stop, Swap

As we discussed, bad habits often spring from subconscious attempts to meet a need. Simply booting the habit without a stand-in can often lead to a rebound. Instead, find a replacement habit that scratches the same itch. Looking to shatter the "glass of wine after work" habit? Commit to a brisk walk instead when the craving strikes to unwind.

2. Make it Simple

2. Make It Simple

Our decisions are largely influenced by our environment. If you leave candy on your desk, you’re much more likely to eat it while working. On the other hand, if you place healthier nuts or fruits on your desk, it will be much easier to make a good choice when the sugar cravings strike. By designing our environment to support our goals, we can make it much easier to reduce temptations.

3. Paint a Picture

Visualize your success in technicolor detail. Envision yourself triumphantly breaking that habit. Soak in the thrill of accomplishment, and fast forward to a few weeks from now, when that bad habit is just a memory. What are the perks of breaking this habit? How do you feel?

4. Find an Accountability Buddy (or a few!)

Sharing your commitment to breaking a bad habit exponentially increases your chances of success. It's easy to renege on promises to ourselves, but not so much when others are in the know. Bonus if you can find a friend who's also on a habit-transforming mission, you can cheer each other on, hold each other accountable, and celebrate each other's victories.

Imagine This...

Let’s see how this might play out in real life. Say someone, let’s call her Emily, wants to cut back on coffee because she’s been feeling anxious and wants to reduce the negative side effects of caffeine.

Emily tracks her coffee-drinking habit for a week and finds that she typically has a cup in the morning at home, one at lunch with her coworkers, and often she finds herself making a 3rd cup at the office around 3 pm.

Using this process, Emily is able to completely wean herself off of regular coffee in just a few days, and is feeling much better.

It’s vital to speak kindly to yourself and be gentle with yourself throughout the process – slipping up is part of what makes you human. And while not every transition may be as smooth and seamless as Emily's, remember tiny changes lead to transformational results. You got this.


Say Hello to Better Choices

If you’re like Emily and KNOW cutting back on caffeine would be good for you, try Everyday Dose. Our Mushroom Coffee+ is everything you love about coffee, without any of the side effects, and way more benefits like added gut, brain, and immune support. With 80% less caffeine than normal coffee and all natural ingredients, its the ideal foundation for your healthiest, happiest life.

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