Habits are really hard to break. It doesn’t matter how many tricks you read about, it doesn’t matter if there’s a “change your habits in 28 days… or your money back”. You may as well ask for the money back now, because habits are hard to break. Now, that is not to say that they are impossible and you’re stuck with it forever.. but it’s going to take work.
I know someone who every time he walks past the kitchen he opens the refrigerator. He is constantly surprised by this fact. He could have just finished eating dinner and just walks into the kitchen to throw away a piece or paper.. he opens the refrigerator. He can be walking through to head up to his bedroom or to the bathroom.. opens the refrigerator. It drives him insane. He doesn’t even mean to, it just happens. It’s a habit.
I know someone else who has to have the TV on at all times. She walks into the house and automatically turns on the TV, whether or not there is something she wants to watch or not she turns it on and scans or searches or just keeps it on for background. This inevitably causes her to sit and watch instead of doing things on her “to-do” list, but it’s a habit. She doesn’t think about it, she just does.
I saw a meme on social media today about how parents are advised to put something “important” in the backseat with their babies as to not forget them, and people are going crazy, “what is more important than your baby!”.. but this is not about important, this is about habit. People so commonly do things out of habit they sometimes are at a detriment to themselves or their loved ones.
One man eats when he’s not hungry. One woman sits mindlessly watching TV. One parent drives to work on auto-pilot forgetting that it’s his/her day to drop the baby at daycare. All are important, some just have a more immediate result. All are the result of habits. Drug abuse is often called a “habit” and to a certain extent it is. When someone starts to feel a certain way they turn to what has worked in the past.. their “habit” for feeling better.
There are good habits and obviously there are horrible habits. All are easier to create than to make. So when you see something that says, “break habits in 28 days” what it’s really saying is create new habits.. that is possible.. but again.. not all habits are good, and even good habits designed to take the place of bad habits are not as easy to make/break. If you want to make it a habit to take off your shoes every time you walk into a house.. sure, a month later it may just be ingrained in your head, you may not even think about it. Your neuro-pathways have been sparked and you have reminded yourself enough that it’s habit. Same as your drive to work.. it’s auto-pilot.
If you want to stop yourself from looking in the fridge, or get yourself into a new exercise routine, or find better ways of coping with problems than drugs.. that’s going to take time. That’s going to take more than reminding yourself for a couple weeks. That’s going to take creating a new sense of self.. because those habits are linked to your personality, your ego. Those habits are part of what makes you you and how you see yourself as a person.
If you want to break major bad habits you have to decide that you are not a person who does these things. You are a non-smoker. You are a healthy person. You are strong. Because the moment you are a fat person trying to act differently your brain stops listening. The moment that you are an addict trying to be better.. you’ll have all the excuses why you it is who you are. You can’t go to the gym.. you’re too fat, people will laugh. It’s ok if you eat the cake.. you’re fat.. and everyone else is. It’s ok if you use again today… all your friends are and you don’t want to lose your friends.
You are not those things. You are a being that inhabits a body. You are whatever you tell yourself that you are. If you decide that you are healthy and are only going to do healthy things, and keep that in your mind, your heart, and your self.. your ego will evolve. Your habits will form. New habits, based on who you decide that you are. If you are an excuse… then you’ll never run out of those.
I know people can get a little turned off when I mention the word “church”, but I was in church last week and we had a visiting priest from Africa. The Central African Republic to be precise.. anyway, he said that he was very interested to do the homily that week, because it was about Jesus’s (trigger word… bare with you) speech about being judged by those you know.
There is a part of the Bible in which Jesus speaks and everyone questions his authority, as he was just the son of a carpenter… and they knew of his humble beginnings.. and how could HE possibly be important. The Father went on to say how he knows how it feels. He came to this new church on the other side of the world and he was welcomed and respected, and though he loved his home there were always those that would never take him seriously because he was the kid that did…. what have you, 20 years ago.
When starting something new in life this is often a problem that people have. We are already set in our ways and it is difficult enough to start a new course and reprogram our own minds, but it is all the more difficult with the naysayers in our ears. I can remember when I was starting my health journey and I was cutting bad foods and trying to exercise more, and the hardest people to be around were the ones that were closest to me. The ones who were like, “oh… another diet” or “yeah, we can go out next week when you’re over your kick” or “it’s just a piece of cake” .. or pizza or what have you.. “It’s not a big deal. You’ve always eaten it before.”
There is something about human nature that people almost take it as a personal insult if you decide to change.. as if you’re trying to be better than the other person or that your change means that they should change as well.
As I have mentioned before people are very determined to stay the image that they have assigned for themselves. They like their habits. They know their identity. Anything outside of that makes them very uncomfortable. So if identity is permanent than you shouldn’t be able to change yours either. This is an extremely hard battle to wage when you’re already fighting your own mind.
A lot of people will tell you not to share your process or your plans with others. I’m not sure that I agree with that or not. I think it depends on your own resilience at that time (which can change from day to day and minute to minute), and also your opinion of the other person.. as well as a million other things. I do think that it is important to have a support system.. and that there are always those in your life that you KNOW you can’t depend on for support. Them, you avoid like the plague.
I believe this is why support groups like AA and weight watchers and the like are so important. Humans are, at our core, social beings. We need to connect with others. We need support, whether we like to admit it or not, but we can’t always get that at home with the people who are happy in the status quo or feel more comfortable holding our pasts against us. When it’s time for a change.. sometimes we have to make bold sweeping changes. We need to turn away from getting comfort in what’s familiar and move on to a new tribe if you like. The most important thing is not letting other’s define your identity.
I have to start by saying I love the film “Into the Woods”.. yes I know that it is also a play, but I haven’t see that.. and it’s pretty much the same thing. (spoiler) Anyway, it’s one of those fairytale stories with the morals all mixed in. There’s the one about honesty and the one for being true to yourself and going after your dreams but not forsaking others… and on and on.
The finale of the movie is my favorite, though. It’s a song about being careful what you put out into the world. There is a new baby and a scared father and the words are to be careful the things that you say, as children will listen. Careful the things you do, children will learn. It explains how children are constantly picking up on everything that we do and say. If we say that they’re lazy, they will believe it. If we say that they’re bad… they will believe it. If we say that we are bad or not worthy.. they will believe it.. and will learn the same of themselves. Our words and actions will become their words and actions.
Now if that isn’t impressive enough, then it gets into a refrain and it changes..
Careful the wish you make
Wishes are children
Careful the path they take
Wishes come true, not free
Careful the spell you cast
Not just on children
Sometimes a spell may last
Past what you can see
And turn against you
Careful the tale you tell
That is the spell
It starts to talk about the words that we say to ourselves and how we create our own stories based on these words. We create our own reality as we begin to hear and say these words over and over.
It’s very common for someone to put all of their faith into an outside event and believe that their life cannot be complete until we get that love interest.. or the job, or the education, or the right body/looks.. and so forth. We tell ourselves this “story” so often that we can’t see past it. We can’t move forward in anyway until we reach that goal. Now sometimes this is a good thing, and it motivates us to strive for our best… but sometimes it holds us back from creating the life we truly want.
The other story that we like to tell ourselves is all of the reasons that our past is our problem. We have never succeeded in life because.. our parents were jerks, our exes left us, we didn’t finish school.. we’ve always been….. and that’s our story. That’s who we have become> we no longer have hopes and dreams and motivations.. we simply have our fallback “reasons” for our problems.
All of these are nothing but words.. nothing but stories, and fairytales. Our lives are not our past or our future, our lives are the choices that we make everyday. So be careful the things you say.. and do.. they are you.
It amazes me the lengths people will go just to be right. A “friend” on Facebook just published a video about how the Left is so hypocritical that they are up in arms about illegal children but don’t try to do anything to stop children being killed here by guns and drugs… when I pointed out that the left has tried to put through policies for gun control and mental health he stated that no one was upset when Obama took the kids from their illegal parents.. when I cited articles that stated that Obama, though he held families and unaccompanied minors in detention centers, he didn’t actually separate babies from their moms. He then spent the next hour defending the policy to anyone willing to comment.
He said that the illegals shouldn’t be breaking the law, that, “How bad can their countries really be that they’d have to risk getting their kids taken away?”. When it was pointed out that some of the countries they are fleeing are violent, and that little girls are being raped and boys are being forced to join armies or drug cartels.. he said that we, as Americans, should just invade their “shithole” countries and take them over.
When it was pointed out that we could easily save the money that would be spent on wars and just aid those who wanted to leave he argued back that it’s not our job to save other people and that they just needed to stop breaking the law.. that just because he wants a new Escalade doesn’t mean he can just take one. He apparently didn’t understand the difference between protecting the lives of their children from rape and murder and getting a new expensive toy.
He went on and on about how if he breaks the law that he would have his children taken away.. even though it was explained that this is just a misdemeanor and no one would have their kids taken away for that.. and even if the kids were taken away in the case of a felony.. they wouldn’t be placed in a detention center. He argued in favor of this policy over and over and spoke of it’s praises and why it should be supported and how it’s all the illegals’ faults for being criminals… then he threw a curve ball and said that Trump had tried to change the policy but that Congress wouldn’t let him.
Obviously this confused me, so is the policy fabulous and right and deserves to be in place.. or is it horrible and bad and Trump is trying to change it? He told me that I was just trying to start an argument. I explained that while I enjoy a fact filled discussion this “argument” just took a turn.. he was no longer supporting his point. He was just going against “the Left” for the sake of it.
The original post was about the Left didn’t care about American children.. when it was pointed out that they did and were blocked in making changes.. he spent his time trying to prove why the Left was wrong for being disgusted by this policy.. then, in a sudden switch, said that this BAD policy wasn’t even Trump’s fault…. uuummm what?
I have noticed this is a growing trend. People don’t want to talk about facts or come up with a resolution.. they just want to be right. They will flop subjects or sides mid conversation just to save face. They make the most inflammatory comments just to confuse and befuddle their “opponent”. No one wants to help, no one wants to resolve.. people only want to win… even if by winning everyone loses.
I just got back from church and today’s topic was a heated one that has been debated for millennia by theologians and novice alike. What is the father, the son, and the Holy Spirit? They are 3 different things… but yet all the same. The priest at my church discussed the different analogies used, like St Patrick and his shamrock, the theory that they were like the different stages of water, or some other that God was the sun, the light was Jesus and the warmth was the Holy Spirit. He concluded by saying that we may never understand, but that ours was not to know. Ours was to believe. That all would be clear after death.
Now, I know a lot of you are probably rolling your eyes. This is one of the problems that religion has. Everything must be taken as fact and believed without proof… but, in my humble opinion, proof is suspect.
If I tell someone that I believe that the world is amazing, that I find awe in a sunset, in the way that life renews itself, in the fact that water does only change and that because of it’s necessity in life it is incapable of ceasing to exist, that child birth and the bond created, no one would bat an eye. If I made a casual comment about how the “universe” is incredible that it was able to contrive such a masterpiece. Everyone would agree. If I said, “God is incredible”, I would get scoffs and eye rolls. If I said, “Allah is incredible” I would have Homeland security bugging my phones. If I said, “The Goddess is incredible” I’d get men claiming I’m a feminazi.
Vocabulary causes 90% of all problems in this world. I was talking with another mother the other day about cliques and how they separate kids, especially in high school. Humans are designed as a tribe species. We need other’s in order to survive. From the time of early man (you can choose your own origin) we needed each other for protection. We needed help with our young, help with hunting, and gathering, and babysitting. We needed to be with others who would love us as their own in order to ensure the continuation of our species.
Since most of the breeding happened within these tribes it started to create homogeneous looking, speaking, and so forth groups that created societies and cultures. When those from outside came into that tribe it was survival to be suspect, most people who ventured outside of their homeland were not looking to join another, they were looking to conquer, or pillage. There is nothing new about this. If an area ran out of food, they needed to find a new place that was full with food. If someone else was already there then they were an obstacle keeping your tribe from said food.
Most of us learned about the Roman Empire, the British Empire, the Vikings… and even the Europeans who came and “discovered” America. They did this not to assimilate or to help those who the “found”. They did it to get as much as they could for those who were like them… for their tribe. This is just how human nature works, and this is unfortunate.
If anyone ever bothered to talk to each other they would realize how alike they really are. How much people actually agree and just use different words for the same things. I’m not talking about the politics that go along with ideas, that’s where the tribes culture starts to come in to affect, but the main ideas behind the religion, the philosophy, the values are the same.
I was speaking with a Native American Owl Priestess and she was joking about the Twix commercial in which they use the example of the left and right Twix being the same as a bouncer and a doorman being the same.. or a spirit and a ghost being the same. Growing up I heard the Holy Ghost and the Holy Spirit interchanged. I’ve heard Jesus and God interchanged. I’ve heard Allah is what Muslims call God. Today in church they said how “God is Abba.. meaning Father” which is true. Abba is the Arabic word for Father… because Jesus WAS ARABIC.
These books that everyone follow are transcribed over and over from one tribe to the next, in one language to the next, and for anyone who ever saw the News Radio episode when Jimmy James’s book was translated to Japanese and then back, you would know how much even one word being changed can make a difference. The Bible has been translated how many times? In how many languages? And the Apostles shared their word literally by walking about and talking to people.. and then the story was verbally passed down… a game of telephone, anyone?
Now that’s not to say that it’s all a lie, or that I don’t believe. I, personally believe that anything is possible until proven otherwise.. it makes life much more interesting. Thanks to scientists and archaeologists many events and people that are talked about in the Bible… both versions.. have been found to be true. So, then the question lies in, how did things happen.
On the history channel I saw a show on the science behind Moses’s miracles, and how because of certain flooding and iron draining into the sea it made the water look red, and how the locust happen through because of a weather change.. and so on.. so scientists say that they PROVED God didn’t do these things.. that science did. I say semantics.
A while ago I read Dan Brown’s book Origin. I don’t want to give any SPOILERS but in it one of the characters proves that there is no God because everything can be explained by computer code. There is a real life Theoretical Physicist who agrees and questions whether or not we really live in the Matrix because of it. But those that believe in God just say.. “ok, then who wrote the code?”. Just because things can be explained by science doesn’t mean that God didn’t use that science to create the universe.
Neil deGrasse Tyson was interviewed about his belief in God and explained that he did not believe in isms.. much like Ferris Bueller. I agree with his logic. If I told you that I am a Christian then you would automatically assume certain things about me. If I explained that I am actually a Catholic it may change your thoughts a little.. I may seem more Democrat than Republican… If I said that I love to study Quantum Physics… that may throw a monkey wrench in yet another theory…. and there in lies the problem with vocabulary.
If you want to know who someone is don’t judge them based on who you think they are based on what you believe someone “like them” would, should, or could be. Talk to them… ask them what they believe, who they are, and what they feel. You’ll probably be surprised how much you have in common.