You’ve identified something about yourself that you want to change, you’ve engaged in the process of self-awareness and it has led to the understanding that the actions that you personally are taking are the cause of the consequences you are experiencing.
What’s left is for you to make a personal and durable commitment to changing those actions so that you can change those consequences. I’m not talking about simply saying some magic words or making another empty promise. What’s required is for you to make a solemn and irreversible commitment – a contract with yourself, if you prefer – that obligates you to achieving your objective.
It’s not necessary that you have to commit to changing on the spot, here and now, and that you will never perform that bad habit ever again. That’s not going to work because your life is too complicated for that. It probably has taken you years, if not a lifetime, to get to where you are today. Simply promising to yourself that you are going to change right now is about as effective as spitting into the wind.
Instead, take some time to think about what you are promising. Ponder on why it’s important that you succeedHow will your life be different when you have broken your bad habit? What will be the consequences if you continue to engage in the bad behavior?
Excuses and Inner Dialogue
Once you have made up your mind and are committed to making positive changes in your life (which won’t take place right away or all at once … This is a process), the next step is to stop making excuses or allowing negative inner dialogue to influence your decision making.
You already have come to grips with the fact that you are solely responsible for your behavior. It’s not your environment, how you were raised, or how other people have treated you. These are the types of excuses and negativity that people use as a crutch in order to justify their bad habits.
When you have made a genuine commitment to yourself to change, they no longer have any power over you.
Start paying attention to what you tell yourself right before and during the bad habit you want to break. What excuses do you automatically bring up? What kind of rationality do you use that allows you to do whatever it is you want to stop doing? These are the thoughts and feelings you will need to overcome.
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