The key to ensuring long-lasting change in your life lies in repetition. Repetition creates unhealthy habits and repetition leads you out of the addiction trap. All habits are created by repeating them, the more we repeat anything the more it sticks and tells our unconscious mind that this is what we do when we are tired, fed up, bored, shy, stressed, and any of the other emotions that lead us to use our addictive crutch of choice whether it is food, alcohol, drugs, or smoking. It makes no difference; the brain does not care. It only cares that when you feel a certain way it knows that taking your poison of choice will make you feel better and so it gives you those little nudges commonly known as cravings to ensure you do what you have always done in any given situation.
So, how do you escape this cycle? First, you need to stop your unhealthy habit and then find something else to do instead. Whatever you chose to do you need to repeat this every time you feel a negative emotion that would have in the past led you to act out your unhealthy habit. Each day cravings will strike and if every time you chose to do something else instead and keep repeating this new action the cravings for those old unhealthy habits will gradually diminish until they disappear completely because now you have trained your brain that when you feel negative emotions you no longer do A you now do B. Doing B will now become your new habit, which will add to your health and well-being instead of taking away from it.
“Repetition of the same thought or physical action develops into a habit which repeated frequently enough becomes an automatic reflex”Mohammad Ali
Now you can develop an automatic response to life’s difficulties that results in positive outcomes and the better you feel, the better you will want to feel.
Habit change takes time, you need to repeat the new actions over and over again. The more times you repeat it the easier it becomes. As the days become weeks and the weeks become months your old unhealthy habit will become a distant memory, something you used to do.
No one ever said habit change was easy, but it is worth it.