But here's something you may not have considered: you are forming habits, unconsciously, all the time.
Call it a habit, call it a skill, call it a routine. Whatever you call it, it's yours, man. Yours for good because it's now a PHYSICAL circuit in your brain.
But you need to remember that your brain makes no judgments about whether a habit is a GOOD one or a BAD one. It just does what it does, and you end up with this urge to do it whenever the situation arises. And as I said, it could be ANY behavior pattern whatsoever, from a totally trivial routine to the kind of habit that can kill you.
The Big Secret: You can control which habits you create.
After you've repeated an action only two or tbree times, you're already well on your way to establishing a new habit. So...if you can recognize that you're doing something for the second or third time, you can evaluate whether this is a habit you really want.
This means you can consciously do two things most people never think of doing:
1. Stop a negative behavior pattern in its tracks. It's a 100 times easier to prevent a habit from forming than to try to break it after it's ingrained. Just realize you're doing it, and then stop doing it immediately. Ever afterward, do something else instead. End of habit.
2. Consciously construct a positive behavior pattern. Just start doing it and keep doing it, and after a while it will become an automatic routine.
You have the power to notice what's happening in enough time to easily change the game. Imagine the success you can create for yourself if you do.
This ability to self-manage your behavior by thinking about the way you think is called metacognition. More about this...
Post by Dennis E. Coates, Ph.D., Copyright 2015. Building Personal Strength .