As we grow older as humans and individuals, each of us will develop habits during our journey. During this process, many of us will develop habits that will help us to mature as adults and eventually lead us to live more productive lifestyles. Of course, within society some of these seemingly normal habits may be construed as BAD HABITS!
Maybe these so-called bad habits could ultimately affect your personal well-being, your relationships, your career, social acceptance and even your family life. Does smoking or the consumption of alcohol affect your relationships or even the acceptance of the people around you? That’s a tough one to answer and could easily be argued to a higher degree. But, have you noticed how many workplace environments are now segregating the smokers from the non-smokers? Of course, it’s not just the workplace as traditional surroundings like restaurants, retail establishments, health care facilities, government offices, airports, airlines and many other social environments are now prohibiting smoking within certain limits of their establishments or places of business. To me, it’s more of a social norm and not necessarily a bad habit. Remember, it’s still a freedom and a choice to smoke, whether it’s bad for you or not. Of course, it’s also a freedom and a choice to distance ourselves from those that choose to smoke. There, I covered both sides of smoking, so don’t get all critical with me.
However, most of our individual habits and the decision to quit or readjust them, so to speak, boils down to choice. On the other hand, maybe society does play a role in deciding which habits are good or bad. Years ago when I was visiting in Singapore, I watched the local police arrest a young European tourist for spitting on the sidewalk. Maybe that example is a little extreme for most of us, but that’s part of their society or cultural process of habits. Yes, watching a person spit in front of you while you’re walking down the sidewalk may not be one of the best things to witness, but is it a bad habit?
Is that type of habit something we develop as we grow older? What about smoking, excessive drinking, overeating or any other type of habit? I still believe that many habits revolve around the choices we make. We have the choice to eat more, drink more and even smoke more. But, let’s not forget that there are certain factors that can obviously help to increase our levels of consumption or addiction.
Stress is something that everyone deals with in their lives. Stress can also cause people to make those so-called bad decisions in their lives. Whether my addiction to sodas was stress related or not, the fact remains that drinking excessive amounts of sodas was controlling my life. And, as I mentioned in my previous post, I made the decision to quit and did so without any outside support or guidance.
However, like any habits that we’ve grown accustomed to during our life, I can honestly say that it was not an easy task to overcome. Depending on the specific habit that you want to quit, time will be the biggest factor. You’ve probably heard the saying more than once, old habits are hard to break. It’s true! Breaking habits, whether they are considered acceptable or not, takes time and whole lot of patience. Sometimes it’s best for people to seek advice and if necessary, support from others who have gone through the same experience. Reading is probably one of the best self-development strategies to help people in their quest to overcome many habits. Reading can be a form of relaxation and gives you the opportunity to plan and set goals for yourself.
Remember, everything comes down to the choices that you make and the goals you want to achieve during your life. Sometimes the habits we’ve developed are producing the negativity that is holding us back from achieving more.