Are You Struggling To Kick A Bad Habit Or Create A Good One?
Are you struggling to break old routines and replace them with new, healthier ones? Do harmful habits, such as overeating, excessive shopping, smoking, excessive drinking or technology overuse, to name just a few, have you feeling guilty, weak or angry with yourself? Or, are you struggling with poor communication habits, and wish you could stop blurting things out, giving in to others or expressing irritation over small things? Perhaps you engage in repetitive, often unconscious habits, such as biting your nails or twirling or pulling your hair, that make you feel self-conscious and impact your self-esteem and self-confidence. Maybe you’ve promised to break ineffective relationship patterns, but then feel defeated and/or beat yourself up for not being able to affect meaningful change in how you interact with others. It might be that certain habits are negatively impacting many or even all aspects of your life, relationships and wellbeing, making you feel stuck, spinning or consumed with self-disappointment. Or, maybe your habits aren’t too bad, but you want to push yourself to make better decisions, maintain healthy routines and enjoy a higher overall quality of life. Do you want to create and stick to new habits and routines that feel good and move your life in a positive, empowering direction?
Almost Everyone Struggles To Break Bad Habits And Create New Ones
If you’re struggling to break one or more bad habits and/or adopt new, healthier ones, you are far from alone. We all develop bad habits over time, especially those that promote feelings of immediate gratification, which humans are prone to falling victim to. Yet, while our neurochemistry is viscerally wired to engage in activities that make us feel good in the short-term, repeatedly giving in to instant gratification can cause long-term problems with our interpersonal relationships, finances, careers, health and overall sense of self-worth.
We also live in a society that promotes feel good-ism, and many habits are socially accepted and formed unconsciously overtime. Buying a new dress on occasion or having a beer at a party might have turned into shopping sprees or indulging in alcohol to the point of hangovers, making what was once benign now a high risk habit. Or, it might be that, despite your best intentions, you’re struggling to create and stick to new habits. Your New Year’s goals of getting to the gym five days a week, quitting smoking for good this time or replacing soda with water may have fallen to the wayside, making you wonder if you have the discipline and determination it takes to affect real, sustainable change in your life.
The good news is that whether you want to kick an old habit or better your lifestyle with healthier routines, it is possible to form new, healthy habits and experience their long-term benefits. A skilled, experienced and pragmatic habit coach can help you create meaningful change in your day-to-day routine, make healthier living your new normal and enjoy increased satisfaction with your life.
Habit Coaching Can Provide You With Skills, Strategy And Support
If you are really ready and willing to do the significant self-work needed to transform your life for the better, anything becomes possible. No one can do it for you, and it’s often uncomfortable at the start. But, with the help and support of a life coach and a true commitment that originates within you, you can affect the change in yourself and your life that makes you feel proud, confident and fulfilled.
In collaborative, insightful and practical life coaching sessions, we’ll clearly identify and define the habit(s) you are trying to create or change, along with the factors in your environment that either trigger an unwanted habit or block you from fostering a new one. If you’re trying to break a habit, we’ll explore occurrence, intensity and triggers so that you can be fully aware when the desire to engage in the habit arises and take immediate action to engage in an alternate behavior. I can help you learn and practice mindfulness techniques, which can keep you aware of the experience you’re having in the present, slow down and thoughtfully consider the choice(s) you have in the moment. If you’ve been trying to fill a void in your life by routinely engaging in unwanted behavior, we can also explore any unresolved trauma or unmet needs that may be causing feelings of lack or emptiness. Often, by creating awareness and then resolving long-standing sources of discomfort, it becomes possible to naturally make choices that support where you want to go in your life.
Research shows that it’s often easier to implement a new habit than to break an old one, which is why we’ll develop a strategy that replaces old habits with new ones and figure out how to work them into your existing routine. You can develop “habit stacking” skills, which means you’ll add a habit to an already well-functioning routine or on top of a positive, successful habit. For instance, if you already have a cup of coffee in the morning for an energy boost, you can add a healthy food to your morning pick-me-up routine. Essentially, you strengthen what is already working. And, when an alternate behavior doesn’t easily integrate into an existing routine, we can draw from value-based work to help you identify and connect to your innate, most meaningful values. These motivators can help you keep moving forward, working toward developing and strengthening positive personal, social, relational and physical habits even on the toughest of days.
Throughout our work together, I’ll help you stay on track and accountable to yourself as well as continually provide you with tips, tools, techniques and strategies tailored specifically to best support and address your needs and goals. If your goals feel lofty and possibly even unattainable, we’ll work collaboratively to break them down into small, actionable and manageable steps. I can also provide you with assignments and exercises that can help keep you focused and moving forward between sessions.
Regardless of how engrained the habit is or how impossible developing a certain new habit may feel, with determination and guided, practical support, you can make the small changes that lead to bigger changes and eventually improve your overall lifestyle. You can increase self-confidence, self-esteem and literally become the change you wish to see in the world—at least in yours.
You still may have questions or concerns about working with a habit coach…
I’ve tried to quit this one habit over and over, never achieving long-term success. How could working with you help me make it stick this time?
Together, we’ll identify possible triggers and create a coaching plan that supports your specific needs and goals. We will continually monitor your progress and tweak strategies until we figure out what works specifically for you. As both a board certified coach and a licensed therapist, I will foster a relationship with you based on respect and accountability. Our practical, solution-oriented work focuses on your values, and by drawing from the effective techniques you develop in sessions, you can make choices that you feel good and confident about.
How long does habit coaching take?
Habits are not formed overnight, and breaking them takes time, diligence and determination. Research says that it takes three weeks to break a bad habit and 66 days to implement a new one. That said, the effectiveness and duration of coaching really depends on your willingness and commitment to breaking unwanted habits and creating new, effective ones. If you show up fully committed, it is possible to experience significant change in as little as six weeks.
I’m not sure how to fit life coaching into my already crammed schedule.
We can work collaboratively to create a coaching strategy and schedule that best accommodates and supports your needs and goals. We can do multiple, short sessions by phone a week or one long session. I also offer online coaching, in which you can take our meetings virtually in the comfort and convenience of your home or office.
Set Your Future Self Up For Success
If you’re ready to kick old habits and/or create new habits and live a life you feel empowered within, I invite you to contact me to schedule a free 20-minute call. I’m happy to discuss your particular needs and goals and answer any questions you have about habit coaching, achieving both big and small life goals and my practice.