Changing habits

Changing a habit, even if it’s something that really matters to you, is not as easy as some people would have us believe.

I’m sure you’ll have found this out already.

One reason is that our bodies have momentum. We settle into repeated patterns of action because of the way they make us feel. We’re so used to being numbed or enlivened by our habits that the simple declaration “This habit and I are done with one another” is rarely sufficient.

If you want to change a habit, you’ll need to orient towards yourself with great kindness and great persistence.

You’ll need to practice, taking up new habits that orient the repeated patterns of your body in new directions.

You’ll need to commit to dusting yourself off each time you fall out of your cycle of practice, beginning again even if this happens many times.

And, mostly, you’ll need great patience.

I loved this, from Peter Pruyn, paraphrasing Mark Twain:

An old habit is a lot like a cow stuck on the second floor landing: you can’t throw it out the bedroom window; you have to coax it down the stairs and out the front door… one step at a time.

Photo Credit: Tambako the Jaguar via Compfight cc

One thought on “Changing habits

  1. Pingback: Wellness Wednesday: When Your Motivation is a Couch Potato - Dance With Nancy

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