This is a guest post from John Kim: TheAngryTherapist.com
Habits are hard to break. You know this because you can’t break the bad ones you have. Use what you struggle with for good. A major part of growth is about changing behavior. One tool to change behavior is to create habits.
Every time you fight, tell yourself you will try to understand before being understood. When making decisions, ask yourself if it’s coming from a Solid or Pseudo place. When responding, take a good three seconds to think before responding. Once you got this down, see if you can push it two five. Do one thoughtful thing a week for your person (a note, a text, a card). Remind yourself what you love about your person at the same time, every day. On your drive to work, instead of thinking about what needs to be done, review the thought patterns you would like to change. On your drive home from work, sing.
Every day at lunch, right before you eat, remind yourself to focus on the process instead of the product, starting with what’s on your plate in front of you. Try to look people in the eyes, no matter who they are or what they do. Make it a game. Every time you don’t, you must ask a co-worker you don’t know that well how they’re doing. Don’t think about work on the drive to or from home. Spend two minutes every morning reminding yourself that you are sharing your gifts. Not making money.
Before, after, or during work, have a plan that fits your lifestyle. Maybe it’s a morning run, a certain amount of sit ups/squats before going to bed, a class, a video. But make sure you do it at the same time continuously. Once your body adjusts, it will begin to crave it. Your routine will gain momentum and fitness won’t be a heavy “I gotta”, but just a normal part of your life, like brushing your teeth. Take the stairs when possible. Walk after dinner with someone you want to have some a good conversation with and you’ll forget that you’re walking. Try to sweat during sex. That means move around.
Don’t allow yourself to eat after a certain time at night. When eating out, instead of finishing your plate, always take a portion home. Make sure you drink a tall glass of water right when you wake up. Eat some colors (vegetables) before you allow yourself to get anything else. Use honey instead of sugar. Drink a tall glass of water before bed. Don’t eat snacks out of the bag. Ever. Instead of using a scale, let the tightness of your pants be the measuring meter. Focus on feeling instead of numbers. Don’t buy pants you know you won’t feel good in. Never eat because you’re bored.
John Kim, aka The Angry Therapist, is a LMFT whose practice redefines “therapy” in the traditional sense. He uses the internet as a therapeutic tool with an online community as the main space for growth and healing. John and his team provide support to make mental health a daily practice, integrated in everyday life. Join the movement, Live Different: www.theangrytherapist.com. Connect with him on Twitter@angrytherapist