How To Trick Our Brain To Breaking Bad Habits

Good day my fellow STEMers, it's been a long while but I'm finally back with an interesting topic. Is it even possible to trick our brain to break bad habits? How do we get those bad habits in the first place? Don't worry guys, I will let you know all these, just stick around with me. So kindly find somewhere quite quiet and comfortable to read this amazing article I created just for you šŸ˜‰.


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Most of us have bad habits that we have tried to break but can't, so we accept it. The saying that it takes 21 days to make a habit, is totally false. Because according to a research study, it takes about 66 days to make a new habit and also to break a bad habit.

We need to understand that making a habit and breaking a bad habit are kinda of the same. Why would I say that? It is quite simple, in order for you to break a bad habit, you would intentionally, have to stop doing such habit and that's you creating a new habit in breaking your bad habit. For instance, you have a habit of not doing exercise, in order for you to break that bad habit, you have to create a new habit of doing exercise. A close female friend of mine, she always like to eat her nails, that's a bad habit. For her to break that bad habit, she will have to create a new habit of not eating her nails. As you can see, they are similar. Whenever you are breaking a bad habit, you are creating a new habit in it's place. For me, I have been trying to break my bad habit of always been on my phone. So, nowadays if I want to be serious, I will take my phone to another room entirely, so I won't be tempted and get distracted. I'm creating a new habit of controlling my desire to press my phone at all time.

Breaking Bad Habit = Creating New Habit


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To understand how we make habits and break habits, we need to understand what habits are. Habits are actions/behaviors we do everyday without thinking about them, such as brushing our teeth every morning, bathing every day, and so on. Some people now make habits of brushing their teeth every morning and night and also bathing immediately after brushing. What's that thing you do everyday or every morning? If you should ask my girlfriend the first thing I do after waking up, she knows, because it's one bad habit which I'm trying to break. I guess you want to know what it is šŸ˜‚. Alright, I will tell you, everyday the first thing I do after waking up, is pressing my phone. It is very bad, because the first place I go on my phone, is Coingecko, so you can imagine how my mornings have been in the past couple of months šŸ˜‚. When I see the red and downtrend market, I head straight to Youtube to cheer myself up and before you know it, 30 minutes to an hour gone. Very annoying I must say. But recently someone advised me, that the first thing I do immediately after waking up, is hitting the shower and so far, it's been going great but I sometimes don't. But I'm in the process of making a good habit and destroying my bad habit. If you have a better advise, kindly let me know in the comment section. Also, what's that first thing you do every morning?


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How Do We Make & Break Habits?

Habits are easy to make but difficult to break. We as humans have evolve our brain over time, that we arrange activities, in our brain like a folder that we automatically do, once we get a trigger. So, in other words, habits help to free us from thinking about every activities we do, for instance, when you typing on your phone, you know where all the buttons are, you just look at the screen and not the keypad again. Also, like playing a PC game, you are concentrating on the screen and not what you are pressing on the pad because you already know it. To make a habit, they would be a trigger, then the actual habit, which is the behavior and then the reward after performing the behavior. For instance, masturbation is one habit that most of us, do a lot, it is both good and bad, it's all about your believe, I won't be diving in that section today. Things do trigger you to masturbate, such as, seeing a nice image of someone, or watching a sex scene in a movie, or the cold weather. There's a always a trigger. After you have been triggered you masturbate(the habit) and you get a reward from it, which is the pleasure you get from ejaculation.

Now, let's get more scientifical, whenever we do a new task for the first time, our prefrontal cortex and hippocampus lights up and these are the section of our brain that is responsible for decision making and planning. Meaning when we start doing tasks for the first time, we are the ones making the conscious decision to do them. But as soon as we start to repeat that particular task consistently, the putamen and the basal ganglia of our brain lights out and these are the section of our brain that is responsible for execution of tasks and the forming of behaviors and addictions. Meaning we start to perform our tasks without even thinking about them. These part of our brain(the putamen and the basal ganglia) has so many related actions which has been grouped together in order for our brain to use less energy and this is called chunking. This whole process is how a habit is formed scientifically.


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The process of making a habit involves 3 processes which are Trigger, Behavior(habit) and Reward, and this can also be used to break a bad habit(in other words, make a new habit). Quite simple, but hard to do. First, avoid what triggers the habit, which is a conscious behavior(habit) and reward yourself for following through with it. Let's take for instance, my bad habit of always pressing my phone. First step, is to avoid seeing my phone, by placing it in a different room or keep at distance from where I'm working and reward myself by giving myself a 20 minutes break, so I can use my phone for 20 minutes. With time, I would be keeping aside my phone whenever I'm working, knowing that after about 40 minutes of intense work time, I will get 20 minutes of phone time. And that's how you break a bad habit and form a new habit. For my early morning pressing of my phone, I think I will buy an alarm clock, so I can place my phone in different room, because I'm currently using my phone as my alarm.


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I hope you found this article interesting. If you do, don't forget to smash the vote button and drop some good comments. I will like to ask you, what bad habits do you have and what new habits would you like to form? Kindly let me know in the comment section below.

All Images Used In This Article Are From Pexels, Hence, Free For Reuse

Till I Come Your Way, Stay Safe!!!


Thanks For Reading

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