I am sure that we could all use help when it comes to how to change bad habits into good habits. All of us have bad habits we would love to kick or turn into a more positive habit.
This can prove to be difficult, but it is well worth the effort.
Our habits can, to a certain degree affect the way that we think and feel. Bad habits affect our self-esteem and lead to negativity, while good habits lead to a feeling of achievement, accomplishment and help our positive thinking and feelings of achievement.
So what is the key to how to change bad habits into good habits or more positive ones? Here are some tips that will help you to do just this.
How To Change Bad Habits Into Good Habits
Make a list
First, you need to make a list of all the habits that you want to change.
Next to each habit, make a list of all the reasons why you want to stop your habit. Give this a bit of thought and list as many benefits as possible for giving up that particular habit.
For example, if smoking is your habit and you want to give it up then you could put down things like its costs me x amount of money every year, it makes my clothes, hair and breath smell, it makes the house smell etc.
By listing as many reasons as you can as to why you want to give up a bad habit will allow you to see in black and white what it is that you don’t like about your habit and why you should give it up.
The first step in how to change bad habits into good habits is acknowledging that you have habits you want to change and putting them in black and white.
Analyze Your Habits
Ask yourself what it is that you are getting out of your habit, are you really getting what you want from it? Do you really enjoy it? Or is the habit exactly that, just a habit that you have done for so long that you would feel uncomfortable without doing it?
Stop and think what you could do to replace your bad habit that would be a more positive outlet, for example, you could take up a hobby, workout, read, go for a walk, do chores around the home or take up an adult education class. All of these things can help you to take your mind off and break those bad habits.
Visualize how you would feel and the changes there would be if you break your bad habits.
If for example you eat a lot of donuts and wish to replace them with a healthier food choice, picture the differences it would make to your health, the way you feel and your looks if you did quit and replaced it with perhaps eating a fruit salad instead. Picture yourself having more energy, being slimmer and being healthier.
Take It One Day Or Step At A Time
When it comes to how to change bad habits into good habits, always take it in small steps.
Choose a day to give up a habit (best to do it one habit at a time) and try not to look into the future and ask yourself how on earth you will cope. Stick with your decision and keep a journal to get your thoughts and feelings out at the most frustrating times.
How to Handle ‘Change’ Better
There are ways to handle change that are not so scary.
In reality, change is not so much about handling something new and different as it is about making the new and different things a choice – your choice.
The best way to conquer your fear of these new things or changes is by taking control, having a positive mindset and taking charge in a manner that says it is your choice to change. Make this a conscious decision – take ownership of your decisions.
Improving your emotional well-being
Improving your emotional well-being is essential when it comes to how to change bad habits into good habits.
There are many things in life that can affect our emotional well-being and our emotional well-being is one of the most important aspects when it comes to being healthy. In order to be truly healthy, it is essential to have stable and healthy emotions. If your emotions are not stable then your whole body will be affected and this will lead to a decline in health and overall well-being.
Your overall well-being includes healthy eating, exercise and we have to take care of our mental health as well. It is only when the body and mind are fit and healthy that we can gain true overall health.
Emotional well-being, physical well-being, intellectual and social well-being all come together and if any of these are affected it will affect our health.
There are many factors that can affect these, including problems in relationships, unemployment, money problems, social problems and physical problems to name but just a few. Improving your emotional well-being depends on altering aspects of your life that affect it.
Stress is our biggest enemy as it can change our emotions and feelings so it is imperative that you remove as much stress from your daily life as possible.
Try learning new techniques to banish stress quickly and effortlessly without allowing it to build up.
There are many techniques you can choose to combat stress, from practicing yoga and meditation to simple breathing exercises and affirmations, the key is to find the method that works the best for you.
Negative thinking is another downfall many of us have learned to do throughout our lives. This can cause many problems with our emotional well-being.
It’s a really bad habit to always think the worst, or continually put yourself down. This can only lead to low self-esteem and low self-confidence.
Affirmations or positive self-talk is an excellent way to help you deal with negative thoughts and feelings. Changing the way you think will change the way you feel and when you feel better about your life and yourself you will have a different outlook on life which will lead to a healthier you. This is another great example of how to change bad habits into good habits.
Situations that occur in your daily life can change your emotional well-being and while we often cannot change situations, we can change how we deal with them and take charge of how they affect our thoughts, feelings, and emotions. Feelings of anger, sadness, and uncertainty all cause problems with our emotional well-being and ultimately our overall health.
It is important to not harbor these feelings inside you but to let them out.
Harboring anger, resentment or sadness for long periods of time can be devastating for your emotional well-being. Keeping a journal to write about your thoughts and feelings can help as can having someone to talk to; the main point is getting your feelings out.
Key points to improving your emotional well-being are
- Learning how to relax and let go of stress
- Eating a sensible diet
- Exercising on a regular basis
- Getting a good nights sleep every night
- Dealing with problems as they arise
- Giving yourself a break and stop putting yourself down
- Not letting things build up, get thoughts and feelings out
Last but not least, make sure that you do something for yourself each day that you enjoy doing.
7 Simple Steps to Combat The Bad Habit Of Procrastination
Are you a victim of laziness?
Laziness is the root cause of procrastination.
Do you often suffer because of what you initially considered as easy has turned difficult with the loss of time, and what appeared hard, due to further delay, has become impossible now?
You may draw comfort from the fact that you are in the company of many that are affected by the affliction of procrastination.
Believe it or not, if you get rid of your laziness by shaking yourself up into action, you can indeed stop procrastinating and start meeting deadlines.
Here are seven tips on how to change bad habits into good habits by using effective time management.
- Plan your daily must-do activities. Draw up a to-do list. Write it down on paper; or, use a computer or app if you prefer.
- Prioritize the activities with the more important ones taking precedence over the less important. If there are urgent things to do, but not important enough to be worried about if not done, put them below the more important ones. The idea is based on the established principle that 80% of rewards accrue from 20% of effort directed towards accomplishing important work.
- Work out how much time is needed for each of your listed activities. Avoid underestimation, as you may not have enough time to do well in a particular piece of work. Similarly, avoid overestimation, for that may leave some activities without enough time. A realistic budgeting of time is a must. Time allocation is a skill that is acquired with experience. So keep reviewing and revising your time schedule as you progress. Apply the principle of doing work first and then taking time for pleasure and relaxation. Reverse the order only at the danger of falling prey to procrastination. You can get time for rest and relaxation if you are efficient in doing your assigned work. Schedule this into your daily schedule.
- Organize your life. That will help you avoid wasting your precious time and leave more time for the actual work. Remember indiscipline causes confusion and chaos and it eats into your time. For instance, leave things you use each day in the same place. These are things like your glasses, computer, tablet, clothing etc. In this way, you won’t need to waste unnecessary time searching for them.
- Start working bit by bit. You may see a mountain at first, but mountains can be moved, especially if you begin by moving just a small stone from it. You know you cannot move the entire mountain all at once. Do not be overwhelmed by the immensity of the task before you as that can put you off. Just break large tasks into small steps that will get you closer to your end goal.
- Put first things first early in the day. Remember procrastination grows into a habit by the minute. Begin your day by launching yourself head first into the most important job waiting to be done.
- Learn to cope with anxiety, depression, stress and other similar conditions of the mind related to your problems in life. Keep yourself fit, not just physically but mentally as well. Learn and practice suitable mental relaxation techniques such as meditation.
Planning your time is a great way to be productive and to get started on how to change those bad habits into good habits.
Get Others Involved In Helping You Break Bad Habits
Another way to keep you on track when it comes to how to change bad habits into good habits is to tell those around you what you are trying to achieve. It always helps to have the support of others, even if you have all the motivation in the world, or think you do.
Don’t get disheartened if you deviate a little from your chosen path occasionally. This is no excuse to drop your plans to change those habits. Simply pick yourself up and start fresh again but more vigorously. Give yourself a new and better action plan to follow that won’t lead you to the same pitfalls.
See if you can make and keep at least some of the following good habits:
- Focus on your health by eating a substantial breakfast that includes fruits and vegetables; by sticking to fixed meal times; by drinking beverages like fruit juice or milk; by drinking plenty of water; by following a simple fitness program like walking; by doing yoga and meditation or participating in outdoor games and sports and so on.
- Kick your addiction to tobacco, caffeine, food, drink, pornography and so on.
- Devote time to be with your family every day or every week.
- Learn something new as a hobby or for interest;
- Widen your mental horizon by reading, doing crosswords or picking up a sudoku puzzle.
These are just some examples of how to change bad habits into good habits as they are the most popular habits that people want to change.
Feel free to make your habit changing as intricate or simple as you wish and tailor fit it to meet your needs.
Don’t Let Addictions Control Your Life
First of all, have you even realized you need to break free from your addictions? If not, now is the time to make a conscious decision about regaining control over yourself by really trying to kick your harmful habits NOW.
You can’t wait forever for an opportune moment, because it will never come if you don’t want it.
Once you decide to quit, make your decision public. Tell your family, your friends and everybody and anybody who is interested in your well being about it. By doing so, you are making it rather difficult to back out without feeling a bit bashful.
You are perhaps also indirectly indicating to all of them that you are seeking their support for your decision. Actually, it is important to openly enlist their help and co-operation to help kick your bad habit. This is a really important step when it comes to how to change bad habits into good habits.
Avoid getting into situations full of temptations. No matter how strong you are, the temptation will be overwhelming. When you are trying to give up smoking, for instance, hanging out with your chain smoker friends will do you no good.
Don’t accept invitations to a party, when you know you will be subjected to peer or situational pressure to take the very things you are trying never to use. If you do, you will never come out of your compulsive weakness for a particular drug, drink or smoke or some habit you have decided to kick.
Don’t Be Scared To Seek Professional Help
If you are a long-term slave to alcohol or drugs or tobacco or pornography or any of the several other equally harmful substances or things, you may need professional help in addition to the support from your family and friends.
After an in-depth look at your case, specialists will chalk out a program for you to follow under their supervision over a specified period of time. Following the rehabilitation program is key to getting yourself back on track. Ultimately, your own will is the only thing that can get rid of the addiction for good.
People under some stress or tension wrongly believe that they can calm themselves and feel relaxed if they use tobacco or alcohol or drugs. They first try to drown their sorrows in addictive substances and habits injurious to health but end up drowned in their addictions.
If you can realize the futility of seeking relief from your grief in addictions, you will never put yourself at the risk of damaging your health and losing your wealth as well as destroying whatever happiness you have had so far. There are better ways to confront and conquer your problems than giving in to addiction.
Remember YOU Are In Control
Remember there are no quick-fix solutions to life’s problems, including how to change bad habits into good habits.
Likewise, there are no easy ways to overcome your addictions. Only concerted efforts on your part will help you in the end. Take control of yourself by training your mind to face life’s toughest challenges.
Please feel free to comment below if you have any other helpful suggestions on how to change bad habits into good habits.
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I agree with you to make my decision public. Telling my family, my friends on what I am planning to do makes me commit to it. Failing to follow through will give me embarrasment. So by doing this, there is no turning back and I will do whatever I can to get rid of my bad habit.
Yes this is definitely one way to go Kit. You are then showing more commitment by sharing with others and have accountability for yourself.
This is really good! Thank you! There have been some things that I’ve been working on to help break some bad habits and relieve stress. This will help me out a lot! I’ll be referring to it quite often, I’m thinking 🙂
I’ve discovered that yoga really is good for relieving stress. I get these stress migraines, and that’s one of the things I use to keep my stress in check as well as help relieve the pain.
Thank you for this article! This is really helpful!
So glad you found this article to be of use.
I agree yoga is a great stress reliever. Hope you can find better ways to manage your stress headaches.
This is such an inspiring article! I have two bad habits that I want to change: snacking on junk, and procrastinating tasks that I don’t like to do. I want to replace them with: snack on fruits, and write down the list of tasks that I’m reluctant to do, and complete one per day. So at least it won’t be so daunting. Thanks for these timely reminders about being proactive in changing our bad habits.
Good luck with your new habits Joo. Although I would recommend more veggies along with the fruit.
Also nothing works quite like a list in getting those tasks done in no time.
I suppose a lot of the sections you’ve covered here could well work with bad habits in your business/career – I could certainly do with handling them from time to time!
It was really interesting to see that you included stress and negative thoughts in a ‘habit’ article – two things that I suffer with from time to time, and two things you don’t often think about as being habits.
A few years ago I was told by a business friend to write the letter ‘P’ on either hand between thumb and forefinger, every day. Okay, it looks a little messy/strange but the idea is to look down at it and to remind yourself to think positive every time you see it.
I firmly believe that positive thoughts lead to positive results – most of the time inadvertently, would you agree?
I like that idea with the P on your hand Chris. You know what they say though, anything done repeatedly becomes a habit, and it’s the bad ones that we want to avoid.
Thank you so much for this article. Bad habits on certain things are some thing that I definitely want to change especially when it comes to negative thinking.
I’ve had to deal with some terrible circumstance recently and it has become so difficult to not to think negatively, but you list the things needed to overcome this which is perfect. Making a list makes absolute sense because you want to see what exactly these habits are or a paper trail so to speak so then you can decide which ones to change.
I also want to visualize more how I would feel if those habits were to change. Everything listed is great and I’m going to start doing this immediately. Thank you again!
Thanks for stopping by Brian. Putting things down on paper does make things seem a lot clearer.
Glad to be of assistance and all the best.