I'm curious about this...
What's your opinion on what habits are for?
I put an Instagram poll out yesterday and the most popular answer was they have no purpose they are just something I do, which is half right because they are just something you do, but they do have a purpose!
All habits are solving a problem!
First time I heard that I was confused and pondered for days "I have some less than idyllic habits, but they are just habits they are not solving any problem!"
Let me explain then you can go do some digging!
I had a time where I had the habit of swigging glasses (bottles) of wine every week.
I had a binge eating habit for a time
I had an overtraining habit for a time
I had a habit of sitting mindlessly scrolling on Instagram for hours.
ALL these habits were solving a problem I had.
The wine was solving the problem of needing a sense of relaxation and relief from my mind, to numb uncomfortable feelings, to fill an unhappiness void and to make me feel temporarily comfortable as me.
The wine was my solution to those problems.
The binge eating habit was solving a whole number of problems, on a physical level it was giving my body the calories my it desperately needed because it was so deprived by dieting, it gave a temporary high which felt good because I felt so shit most of the time.
It numbed uncomfortable feelings and helped me fill an unhappiness and loneliness void in my life.
The overtraining habit was solving the problem of settling my FEAR of getting fat, it was filling a loneliness and unhappiness void.
The training was offering me a solution by giving me the perception I was in control, distracting me and actually giving me an identity.
The mindless scrolling habit was solving the problem of not wanting to deal with life and not wanting to deal with my thoughts.
The scrolling offered distraction and escapism.
None of those habits were just things I did they all served a purpose.
But listen the habit doesn't have to be anything major for it to be solving a problem.
For example, the habit of sugar in your tea is solving the problem of the tea not being to your taste pallet, you chewing gum when you work is to maybe increase your focus, or work out some stress-energy!
So when it comes to changing habits knowing the problem you are solving is powerful.
Because when you know the problem you are trying to solve with a particular habit;
you develop self-awareness.
you empower yourself to ask "is this solution helping me to solve the actual problem or is it a bandaid?" Is there a more deep-rooted reason I have these habits and do I need to do some internal work to help me deal with the real problem (The problems I had were not being solved by the solutions I was choosing I was just band-aiding to the max, my solution should have been the habit of journaling and seeing a therapist regularly!)
you are empowered to find a different solution to the problem.
you can choose to change the habit by deciding on a new course of action then repeating it over and over until it becomes the new solution.
In a nutshell, we don't just do things randomly, so the best thing you can do is to start becoming more curious about yourself! Curiosity may have killed some cats but also leads to a more enlightened life experience!
So I challenge you to do a little habit audit and I'm feeling all happy generous so here's a coaching template I use with my online clients HERE and here is a video about how to use it HERE
Let me know if you discover anything interesting!