Conquering 10 Bad Habits This New Year
The article below on killing bad habits immediately is by Thomas Oppong and taken from Medium Personal Growth.
To help transform bad habits into loving ones, I am using pure and uncut essential oils of patchouli and frankincense and blends with cinnamon bark, geranium and clove.
Diffusing the oils, using them under my feet, and putting drops into my palms and inhaling their deep, transformative aromas is a consistent routine.
I am also taking soaking baths infused with the oils, and getting enough rest with the help of a blend of valerian, lavender and rue essential oils.
Habits define us. And nothing sabotages your creativity and productive life quite like bad habits. In the words of Samuel Johnson “The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.”
To live a balanced, productivity, creative and fulfilling life, ridding yourself of your unproductive habits is an important investment.
It’s easier to keep going than to take a few minutes to reflect, plan, and to really look at what needs to change for you to create your own version of a productive week, month or year.
It’s about time you paid attention to the habits that could be hindering your progress in life and career.
Kill the excuses!
Do you ever catch yourself making excuses when things don’t turn out as you had expected? Have you ever tried to explain away why you didn’t, couldn’t, shouldn’t or simply wouldn’t do something?
I’m too tired. I don’t have the time. I am not capable. Someone else will do it. It’s too late now. Now is not the right time. I am not talented. I am not ready. I’m too scared. Nobody will help me. What if I fail. I don’t feel motivated. I’d rather do nothing. I don’t have the money…yet! Those are the biggest excuses people make.
It’s easy to come up with excuses and justify not getting started. The longer you fill your head with rationalizations and empty excuses, the less time you have to take action.
Jordan Belfort said, “The only thing standing between you and your goal is the bullshit story you keep telling yourself as to why you can’t achieve it.”
It’s easy to say, “I will start when I have more experience, money, time and resources.” By this time next year, you will have a lot more excuses.
It’s a cycle. And once you get caught in the loop, it, can be difficult to break free and do something meaningful you care about.
Many people are living their entire lives without ever standing up and stepping out. But it’s exciting to witness the rare few who dare themselves and step out of their personal bubbles to make a change.
Most of use live with the stubborn illusion that we will always have tomorrow to do today’s work. We consistently hold on to this belief and keep procrastinating until work becomes a heavy burden.
Left unchecked, we always default toward a more comfortable path. Your comfortable zone provides a state of mental security. You can understand why it’s so hard to kick your brain out of your comfort zone.
Your super connected habit
If you can be reached via smartphone, email, Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn, you’re way too available and all these outlets are possible connections that can distract you from your purpose.
In his best-selling book, The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains, Nicholas Carr writes, “The Web provides a convenient and compelling supplement to personal memory — but when we start using the Web as a substitute for personal memory, by bypassing the inner processes of consolidation, we risk emptying our minds of their riches.”
Disconnect and watch as your productivity soars.
Your smartphone might be the biggest productivity killer of all time. Most people just can’t put the phone away. If your phone is connected online, the temptation to stay updated about almost everything is very high.
If you can, put down that phone (or power it off) for a while when in the office and witness the effect that can have on your level of productivity.
Multitasking is killing your brain
Multitasking keeps your mind full, busy, and always under pressure. Science has proven that only 2 percent of us can really multitask efficiently. So just give it up already.
Stop multi-tasking, seriously stop. Of all the bad habits, multitasking is among the worst and most common. Multi-tasking does not necessarily make you more productive as you may think. You can actually achieve more in less time when you single-task and focus on getting one thing done well.
It takes about 23 minutes and 15 seconds to fully return to a task after interruption, according to Gloria Mark, Professor at UC Irvine, in Fast Company. So you may be wasting a lot more time than you think.
In his book, The Myth of Multitasking: How “Doing It All” Gets Nothing Done, Crenshaw explains the difference between “background tasking” — like watching TV while exercising — and “switchtasking,” juggling two tasks by refocusing your attention back and forth between them, and losing time and progress in the switch.
More is not necessarily better. In fact, in many cases the quality beats the quantity.
Focusing on the things that bring the biggest rewards or achievement is a great strategy.
Saying YES to everything
Time is the raw material of productivity and creativity. We are not taught to say “no.” We are taught not to say “no.” “No” is normally considered “rude.” But “yes” limits creative and productivity time.
Saying “no” means you have time to focus on your own creation, tasks and projects, rather than responding and reacting to requests.
“You can’t let other people set your agenda in life” says Warren Buffett.
How is how Charles Dickens rejected an invitation from a friend:
“‘It is only half an hour’ — ‘It is only an afternoon’ — ‘It is only an evening,’ people say to me over and over again; but they don’t know that it is impossible to command one’s self sometimes to any stipulated and set disposal of five minutes — or that the mere consciousness of an engagement will sometime worry a whole day … Who ever is devoted to an art must be content to deliver himself wholly up to it, and to find his recompense in it. I am grieved if you suspect me of not wanting to see you, but I can’t help it; I must go in my way whether or no.”
Acting on the directives of your inner critic!
“Remember, you have been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” ― Louise L. Hay
You are not good enough! You can’t do it! Don’t even bother trying! It’s too late for you! Nobody will share it, like it, recommend it or even see it! Don’t waste your time! You have no writing credentials. You’re terrible at grammar, punctuation, and using parentheses. No one wants to read your opinions — everyone has their own opinions to sort through.
“Turn down the volume of your negative inner voice and create a nurturing inner voice to take its place. When you make a mistake, forgive yourself, learn from it, and move on instead of obsessing about it. Equally important, don’t allow anyone else to dwell on your mistakes or shortcomings or to expect perfection from you.” ― Beverly Engel
Psychological research shows that success and wellbeing are associated with high self-esteem, and that people with lower self-esteem suffer a disproportionate share of emotional and behavioural problems.
The truth is…
Nobody is perfect enough to begin anything! You will never be ready for anything…ever! I love to write and share. I’m not a professional writer. I have no writing credentials. I am not Stephen King.
I have no technique, and I am not trained. But I write anyway. It matters that I show up everyday. I can only get better with practice. My inner critic has gotten weaker with time.
Five more bad habits to break are:
- Aiming for perfection
- Delaying the launch of your passion project
- Worrying about your weakness
- Giving a f*ck! (Stop that!)
Image courtesy NewAfricanSpirituality.com