How to Beat your Bad Habits and be Happy - 7 Steps to Kill Bad Habits

Bad habits are controlling, hard to manage and can seem impossible to get rid of.  Breaking a bad habit is a process and can take patience.  The biggest part is that you are able to be aware of your habit and form processes to curb it.  Beating your bad habits can be a lot of work but you are left happier and healthier when you do.  

Breaking the habit or habits that control your life can put you on the path to be your best self.  Changing your habits and overcoming the fear of change helps you to have a happy life and a positive attitude.

I am a chronic phone user.  I love to scroll through the endless sea of posts and stories.  Problem is, it’s endless.  I can scroll through post after post and never realize just how consumed I can get.  

I’m not going to share how long each day I’m on my phone because it is a little excessive and my “Daily Screen Time” already shames me enough.  

I don’t want to keep up this pattern though, my phone is not a way of life.  I want to stop reaching for my phone whenever I have a hand free. By trying to catch myself during my scroll, I can start to break the habit.  Acknowledging I have an issue and catching myself in the act, help to begin to change my habits.  Instead of reaching for my phone, I try to grab a book instead. When my hands itch for the fix on my feed, I find something else to do with my hands. Crocheting, drawing, or cleaning are quick ways for me to distract myself.  

I’m not over my scrolling addiction and I can still find comfort in my old ways but I have to keep coming back to the real world.  Pulling myself out of the trace that bad habits bring can be really tough and change will not happen overnight but with repetition and replacement with good habits is helping to break my bad habit cycle.  

You are a wannabe go-getter and you want to live your most fulfilled life but you don’t know where to start? When you subscribe to my newsletter you get access to my Daily Success Driver and Habit Tracker! Both of these work together help you choose the right kind of habits and stick to them!


Tips for success

These really don’t fit into my 7 step bad habit breaking system but I think they are important to note, as they may help you get an extra edge over your bad habits.

Buddy System - This works really well when you need help to keep yourself accountable.  By finding someone who is trying to quit the same bad habit you are, you can work together to keep each other on track.  Having someone who is going through the same thing you are, gives you someone to relate to and can make you more likely to stay on track.

Talk about it - Maybe you don’t have anyone who can be your partner in breaking your bad habits but you can use social pressure to keep you accountable.  By talking about and telling your friends, family, or coworkers about your goal, you seeming leave yourself with no option but to succeed.  

Reward Yourself - When you find yourself meeting your goals, make a point to acknowledge it.  Make reaching your goals something exciting and something you look forward to.  

Step 1 - Acknowledge your Habit

Chances are if you are reading this then you already know what your bad habit is(or habits are).  Acknowledging your bad habit is a little more than knowing what your habit is.  Acknowledging your bad habit is also about accepting that your bad habit does not serve you.  You have to believe that your bad habit is worth getting rid of.  

Step 2 - Determine Causes

To fully understand your bad habit you have to find the trigger or cause of it.  Most commonly stress and boredom are the cause of bad habits.  You can try to narrow it down even farther to help with the next step.

When you get stressed at work you might feel like lighting up a cigarette or you might start drinking every weekend.  Maybe when you’re bored you pick up your phone.  What drives you to your bad habit?

Step 3 - Change your Environment

When you have triggers all around you it can be hard to make sure you don’t slip back into your bad habit.  By removing any potential triggers you can limit the frequency that you will have to fight your mind not to resort to the bad habit.

If you are trying to quit sugar, you should get rid you the snack foods in your pantry and make sure not to buy any more.  If your bad habit is using your cellphone too much, you could try leaving your phone in another room or even set a time in your household that you make cell phone free.  

Step 4 - Set Goals

You don’t have to eliminate your bad habits cold turkey.  Instead, work on setting reasonable goals for yourself to meet.  Use goals as daily motivation to keep your bad habits at bay.

If you want to quit smoking, try to limit the number of cigarettes you have.  Start by having one less than normal, then two and so on until you reach one cigarette per day.  Try to stop entirely for one day then two. Quitting your bad habits does not have to happen all at once; start small and work your way up.

Step 5 - Create Healthy Habits

When you can rely on good habits instead of your past bad ones, you can channel your energy into something healthy.  Instead of smoking when you get stressed, try meditating or add daily physical activity into your routine.  Take the energy you once had for your bad habit and use it for something to benefit you.

Making good habits is also a process but it can be the turning point for leaving your bad habits behind.  Develop happy habits and become happy yourself.  

Step 6 - Learn Awareness

If you find yourself feeling stressed or reaching for the bad habit, take a moment to acknowledge it.  Check in with yourself.  Are you feeling any certain way? Bored? Stressed?

If you can catch yourself before you begin to engage with your bad habit you can reroute and pick a healthier way to deal with how your feeling.

You can also use this strategy to catch yourself during the act as well.  Your response may be more of, what can I do right now to stop myself from continuing my bad habit?  How can I pull myself out of the act that I'm partaking in?

Step 7 - Keep Showing Up

Breaking a habit is hard and there is a good chance that will power alone will not be enough to keep you from your bad habit.  Learn to accept when you relapse but also learn to get back up.  You have to actively want to break your bad habit and when you can keep coming back to good habits and healthy ways of dealing with stress, you increase your ability to not let your old ways control you.  

Breaking bad habits is hard because they are something that you have become comfortable with.  The key to successfully freeing yourself from them is to put in the effort and not be afraid of change.  When you are willing to work for the things you want, you will see results. You already know what your bad habits are, now it’s up to you to do the work and free yourself from them.

Get your bad habits off your chest by leaving them in a comment!  Let’s work on this together!


Getting Motivated is Hard, Try this Instead

It’s no doubt that motivation can be a big driving force for positive change.  When motivation is high, getting stuff done doesn’t seem so hard. Your goals seem achievable and you feel like your making real progress.  You ride the high wave of productivity until…

It just stops.  You don’t feel motivated and everything that was once so much easier becomes a struggle.  You forget to take your vitamins, your stay in bed too late to workout before your job, and you just overall feel drained.  

So where does your motivation go? And most importantly how do you get it back?

Why Motivation isn't Real

When you're feeling the spike of energy that motivation creates, it's almost all-consuming.  You feel like nothing can stop you from reaching your goals. Then you wake up one morning and instead of jumping out of bed to start your day, you pause.  In your head, you start to justify not getting to the things you had once been really motivated to do.

All the energy you once had to get shit done is just gone now.  

This happens all the time.  You probably cannot even begin to imagine how many new years resolutions go unresolved or just how many people will never lose those last 5-10 pounds.

Motivation is weird and tricky because, as the definition implies...

Motivation - The general desire or willingness of someone to do something.

It’s all up to you and how your feeling in a specific moment.  Let’s say you just finished an Instagram binge and all you can think about is how you want to get fit like the photos you saw.  Maybe you’re feeling really motivated and ready to crush your workout. But maybe you’re not, instead, you feel self-loathing and beat yourself up about not sticking to your workout routine.  

There’s a number of different factors that play into your motivation, the biggest one being your mindset.  Motivation has less to do with outside factors and more to do with you.

The following tips you can use to help bring more motivation or power on when you can’t seem to get motivated.

1. Define your Why

Why do you NEED to accomplish your goals?  Why do you feel drawn to them? What makes stopping not worth it?  What happens if you stop making progress? Will you still be satisfied if you don’t continue?

Writing down your answers are going to force you to further analyze your drive behind your goals.  These questions might not light the fire under your ass but they can help you see the value in pushing forwards.  When you can look at your goal and know that it is a need, it will be a lot harder to ignore.

2. Use Awareness/Mindfulness

By checking in with your emotions you can work to release any tensions you have towards your work or lack of.  Bring awareness to the action and steps you must take to achieve your goal. You can do this through meditation or the simple act of being aware.  

How do you feel when you’re making progress?  How do you feel when you’re not? Are you trying to attain your goal at the sacrifice of something else?  Are you ready to let go of that?

Are you feeling motivated and ready to get shit done yet?  Are you looking for an easy way to track your successes? Habit trackers are perfect for that.  By signing up to join my email list you get access to my personal habit tracker. It can help to keep you motivated and on track!  It’s printer friendly and customizable to fit your specific goals!


3. Daily Check-Ins

Using a habit tracker or some form of accountability tracker will allow you to see your day to day progress.  By making a habit of working towards your goals every day, you are more likely to stick with it.

Journaling can also be a great way to make sure you stay accountable and mindful of your progress.  This way you can not only record when you work on your goal but also the successes and failures you encounter along the way.  Having a way or multiple ways to record your progress can bring extra awareness and help to make you accountable.

4. Learn about your Goal

In your free time(or maybe when you’re supposed to be working on your goals.  Are you procrastinating right now?) research or learn about what you want to achieve.  Look at people who are living the life you want to, learn about different tools that you can use to assist you, and read news or articles pertaining to your area of interest.

By discovering information about your goals you can spark new interest in them.  

5. Break it Down

Looking at the big picture is always intimidating and can make your goals seem impossibly far away.  By working towards mini goals you can feel a lot more accomplished and are able to see yourself making progress towards the ultimate goal.  

Instead of trying to tackle everything all at once, take a moment to break your big goal into a number of small ones.  That way you don’t try to take on more than you can while still making visible progress.

Although motivation can definitely be powerful in achieving your goals, it never sticks around long enough.  By experimenting with different ways to view your goals you can teach yourself to harness motivation but also begin to master discipline.  Being motivated is up to you.

It’s time to start crushing your goals. Comment what you’re working towards!