This is a large subject in itself. We all at some point in our lives have fallen victim to adapting and leaving behind many in the past and plan on executing even more in future. It is a constant struggle, I have read so many articles, videos of people experimenting, trying out different ways of adapting to being comfortable with discomfort in order to make a better living. I would say habits are a form of energy that can be put to use for the betterment of oneself or the worse. I have had my own piece of cake when it comes to getting rid of habits that were destroying my life and my health in a profound way. It is the single most difficult thing to process.
J Krishnamurti, a spectacular narrator and having the art of reasoning and understanding the most abstract of analysing objectively. I recently came across a video where he talks about how we can break habits.
Habits are repetitive, they have such an impact resulting in the destruction of lives or the other way around. This is a powerful tool, once you know how you can mould it for your better. Habits can be projected internally or outwardly, the habit of drinking, overthinking, talking, sleeping the list is long. How can you break free from them?
Who is to stop it?
How does it start? let’s take overthinking as a habit. Now how can we know that it is a habit? Is it because someone took notice of it? or were you aware of it? Krishnamurti phrases a question, demanding the need to first understand who is to stop it? If I have to rephrase that, where do I start? If we take overthinking as a habit, Is it to do with the fear of the unknown? or having to make sense of everything? Do you think it will hinder your future decisions? or are you afraid of the consequences? There is a greater meaning to understanding what is stoping you from breaking the line.
Is there another entity?
What forces you to not overthink? Is it the quintessence of desire? If you do stop it through desire it would create another conflict? Is it possible to break through without conflict. There are ways I could, can I take a drug to slow it down? It becomes challenging when you have to break it without any effort, or reward or any side effects. Know the voices and understand why you want to change not because it is something that is being demanded of you.
Being aware of the patterns is a way to seeing how you can either resit or stop it. Awareness is nothing but looking at something without any reaction or choice, of past memories or opinions not seeking reward or punishment. Watching the anxiety rise, the thoughts, conclusions being formed, connecting the dots or having panic attacks. Try to understand and give it your complete energy and attention. Suppose you succeed and make it stop, these are habits we talking about it is bound to come back.
After it subsides again, which leads to repeating and becoming mechanical. The next period of time you see it happen you give your attention, which simply means you not attending. Giving attention results in no wastage of energy and the same thing repeats and goes away. When you are aware of the patterns that lead you to the consequences is when you give your attention, resulting to you becoming alert which would help you seek new things every time to get rid of it. Which eventually would break the pattern of repetition.
Seeking new ways of tackling with all your energy and attention would lead to new results and breaking of habits. It doesn’t have to be the same every day, it can change till you get comfortable in adapting to it. Distracting yourself as soon as it knocks at your door, has been one of the best tools for me breaking some of my habits in the past. It is more experimental, as it breaks the pattern of repetition. I would take the example of changing your sleep cycle. Making small changes, and experimenting with your timings will give you the freedom of flexibility, to put in simple words. If given your time and energy it is just a matter of days till you see changing for the better.
Last But Not Least
Embrace your flaws, and be grateful of the storms exceeded. One step at a time, because we all intend to only get better.