Breaking Bad Habits

Bad habits. They start pretty much as soon as we’re old enough to walk, whether it’s sucking on our thumbs or not sharing our toys. As we get a little older, the habits change, for example, my younger brother used to color himself with markers every time someone was in plain site. A habit he luckily grew out of. As we get even older, the habits can be little things we don’t even notice, like chewing with our mouths open, or worse habits, like smoking or drinking all the time. Even if you have a clean record, can anyone truthfully say that they do not have bad habits?

I thought about my bad habits as I sat in class one day, pulling my split ends apart and picking at my nails. These are two things I do when I’m nervous or anxious about something, or if I’m just really bored. Are they the worst bad habits I could have? Probably not. But I now have nubs as nails, so I should probably stop anyway.

No one is perfect, everyone has a bad habit they know they should get rid of. Everyone does something that isn’t great for them or that bothers someone else. Bad habits are something we pick up on as we grow, and since everyone has their own little quirks, just how bad are bad habits?

Junior Regina Zucchi said, “Bad habits are a comfort zone and as soon as you break those habits, you break out of your comfort zone. It’s a hard thing to do because it’s a change in your life, and change is hard for some people.”

Junior Lauren Walsh, agreed. “I think it’s easiest to break a bad habit if your gradually try to give the habit up a little bit at a time, rather than try to break it suddenly. I think if you give yourself time to adjust, you will be a lot more successful in breaking it.”

Charles Bruns, adjunct professor in the communication department, explained, “When you think of the word ‘bad’ habits, you’re acknowledging that it’s negative. One way to break it is to think of a positive way to change it, and make an effort. You hear a lot about what ‘good’ is, and good is rarely a bad habit. I didn’t say breaking a bad habit is easy, but if you consider it bad, you know it’s a negative.”

Bruns added, “I notice a lot of people try to break habits by going to the extreme, for example, needing to exercise and going everyday. But if the person can’t go for one day, they stop going completely. You have to take habits in steps, and work your way up.”

Even in an effort to not throw myself under the bus, I still have to admit I do have a lot of bad habits. Regardless of big and small, they are still negatives in my life that I would definitely do better without. I’ve tried to break habits, and when I do, I go to the extremes, from 0-100. Usually, this doesn’t result in the habits breaking. After some online scrolling, I found that the best ways to break the bad is to accept it and to take slow steps to make an effort to change.

In a way, bad habits make us who we are, as do the good. Everything we do is a habit, from our daily routine to what we eat. Our style of clothing is a habit, as is our style of working.

For example, my style of working is procrastination, a bad habit I’ve had since I started school. I was the 5th grader awake at 2 am doing a project that I knew about for weeks. That hasn’t changed. I’m now the junior in college, up at 2 am writing papers. I should make a conscious effort to change this bad habit before I enter the real work and get a job. Maybe I’ll start tomorrow.

IMAGE TAKEN from pop.com