Healthy Tips to Lose Weight: Choose to End a Habit or Redirect It
A lot of people who are suffering from negative habits think that there is only one option when it comes to dealing with their unwanted behavioral patterns. They think that the only way to handle their habit is to end it. This is not surprising if you have been struggling with smoking, alcoholism, or any kind of habit. You would rather put an end to your habit. Now, you would rather see the end of that behavioral pattern that has been giving you a lot of grief over the years. This is completely understandable. However, the full picture is that when it comes to behavioral patterns, like habits and addictions, there is another alternative. You can choose to redirect your negative behavioral pattern. Keep in mind that your habit is not as strong as you think as you engage in all sorts of automatic behaviors after you get emotional trigger. However, your habit is not as invincible as you make it out to be. Keep reading below.
1. The Power And Force Of Habit
It’s too easy to think that a habit is what defines people. Of course, we all like to think that our actions define us. Well, there are actions that we choose and there are actions that we do on a fairly, automatic basis. Habits definitely fall into this second camp. Habitual behavior pattern takes place like this. You experience an emotional trigger. This emotional trigger starts a cascade of emotional responses in your mind, which leads to a pattern of behavior. When you do these patterns of behavior, you then get another wave of emotional triggers. You see where this is headed. It’s like an upward or downward spiral. When you see something in the outside world, it triggers a mental or emotional state which triggers a behavioral pattern. This behavioral pattern, then triggers an emotional state and on and on we go. This can go either way. This can work towards you, to help you, or against you. Regardless the power and force of habit are when you do things in the same pattern, regardless of the time and of the situation.
2. Most Habits Were Unconsciously Formed
As powerful as your behavioral habits may seem, you have to understand that there are actually chosen. You didn’t come out choosing to respond to certain emotional triggers a particular way. You had to choose it initially, and then you have to practice until it became a habit. This may sound crazy, especially if you’re trying to lose weight. This may sound outlandish, especially if you’ve been having a tough time achieving your weight loss goals. But, the reality is your that your activity levels, your eating patterns, and everything else related to weight loss are habits that you originally chose. But, as you engage in this behavior, it became more and more automatic. But, don’t lose sight of the fact that you originally chose it. It’s just that the habit was unconsciously formed over a long period of time.
3. The First Step To Changing A Habit Is To Become Conscious Of It
It’s too easy to think that our habits define us; that our habits are formed invisible change that bind us and we can’t move. Well, it’s easy to think this way; however, it’s not true. As mentioned above, you originally chose your habits and the chain of emotional payoffs and physical actions that led to your habit. As long as you are unconscious of this, you can make progress towards eventually ending your habit or redirecting it. The key here is to understand that certain physical actions have emotional payoffs. When you rip out that cigarette, light it, and put it in your mouth, there are certain emotional payoffs. when you rush to the coffee shop every single morning to get your big cup of coffee, there are emotional payoffs. The key here is to not judge the behavioral pattern, but instead, be aware of the emotional payoffs involved.
4. Ending A Habit Is Hard While Redirecting A Habit Is Easier
As you probably already can tell from the discussion above, a habit is made of a physical action, emotional triggers and emotional payoffs. When you choose to end a habit, you’re basically choosing to end this complete process: you’re ending the behavior and emotional payoffs; you’re also dealing with the emotional triggers. This seems pretty easy intellectually; however, from a real life level, this is very hard. It’s not like you’re just dealing with one thing at a time. You’re actually dealing with three things at the same time. Considering the fact that you’ve been responding automatically to these emotional triggers for an extended period of time, it’s going to be hard; it’s not going to happen overnight.
You might want to consider redirecting a habit. What does “redirecting” mean? Redirecting is when you take an emotional trigger and you redirect it to a differeng physical response. The physical response then produces either the same emotional payoffs as your negative habits or an even better set of emotional payoffs, regardless you are shifting a physical response. Similarly, you can change the emotional trigger or emotional payoff connected to the negative behavioral patterns that you are trying to change. See the difference between ending a habit and redirecting a habit.
5. Be Clear About The New Habits You Are Trying To Establish
If you are trying to redirect your habit and to use emotional triggers to lead you a better or healthier physical responses, you have to be clear about the new habits you’re trying to establish. Simply hoping that you would be doing something healthier is not enough. In many cases, it might lead you to a worse place than where you are currently. You have to have a clear idea as to the new habits you’re trying to establish. Otherwise, you’ll just be taking shots in the dark and you’re just hoping to get lucky. Hoping to get lucky is not a winning strategy — I’m sorry to say.
6. Changing Emotional Triggers And Payoffs
The problem with redirecting a habit is that the more elements you try to change, the harder it gets. Of course, it’s not as hard as ending a habit. When you’re ending a habit, you’re dealing with all three parts of a habit at the same time. When you’re redirecting, on the other hand, you are dealing with one or two elements. I would suggest that you change emotional triggers or change emotional payoffs. Don’t try to do them both at the same time. Once you change one successfully, you can then move on to changing the other successfully.