Bad Habits : Breaking the Cycle : Part 1
Raise your hand if you have a bad habit going on right NOW! ( Yeah, I know I can’t see you but admitting you have a bad habit is half the battle. Right?!)
If you don’t, then I would hazard a guess that you’ve probably had a bad habit in the past. Suffice to say, most of us come face to face with a bad habits in our lives. Sometimes we face these bad habits head on and for others we ignore the bad habit for as long as possible. Some of us always will have that one bad habit that is a life time struggle while others of us drop, leave and walk over the bad habits they shed.
Bad Habit: A patterned behaviour regarded as detrimental to one’s physical or mental health, which is often linked to a lack of self-control.
Although you probably don’t need the definition to instantly understand what “bad habit” means to you. There is always a list of examples following a definition like this and if you guess things like; drug abuse etc. Your on the right track.
But what if I don’t have a drug problem? I’m still ranked as having a bad habit? You bet.
It’s actually kinda funny but recently I noticed something about myself. “Wow, I’m not watching Netflix’s as much as I was seven months ago!” Thinking back I realized that I had started a new project (i.e. writing) and with this new project taking up so much of my time I hardly had any time to sit and watch TV as much as I once did.
Sounds like a great triumphant story? Pat myself on the back. Sweet, simple and to the point about breaking out of a bad habit right?!
Looking back before that “triumph”…. I remember that I would spend my evening time (and cutting into bed time) regularly watching T.V. Now: watching TV in and of it’s self is NOT a bad thing. But for me this habit had been building. Month by month watching more and more. The problem was I had already watch everything that I thought was interesting and I was now into the mindlessness of watching whatever. That was dangerous grounds, opening myself, making myself vulnerable to whatever director’s thoughts of the movie were. This is not a new habit for me, but one I had stepped on when I was a teen. Now here I am a women in my thirty’s, and a mom to boot, but resurrecting a bad habit of my past.
I couldn’t believe it.
I would go to bed crying. Crying over my lack of self-control. Why was I doing this to myself? I was exhausted from staying up late. I was crabby and snappy the next day to those I loved the most. I felt like my brain was a cesspool from all the mindless junk I had crammed in there just before going to bed! I was empty and left wanting more, night after night because this THING I did; hadn’t filled me. I was stuck in a vicious cycle.
I remember crying out to God again and again, but nothing happened. Or so I thought. There was no big “AH HA” moment. There was no light shining down from heaven. There were no angels singing “alleluia” because I had broken free. Because it took time.
Time to REALLY dig into the heart of why I was trying to use TV to fill the void in my heart when I knew better.
Time to REALLY evaluate my motivations for using TV.
Time to REALLY come up with a plan that would guard the time that I was most vulnerable to scumming to my addiction.
Time to really, pray. And I mean REALLY pray. Do I really mean it when I ask for freedom? Am I really listening to the Holy Spirit for guidance or am I just glossing over the prayers to get to the TV again, whining “But God I tried, I really tried and I can’t seem to break this habit!” Yeah right! God knew all along in my heart that I wasn’t truly and sincere looking for freedom. I was looking for excuses. And boy, oh boy, do I had lots of those.
Freedom for me has happened very slowly. So slowly that I can’t mark it down to a exact time and place. I do know that when I was sincere, truly sincere, then that’s when change happened. I remember a fear of SUCCESS taking hold of me. What if I succeeded in giving up this TV time? What would I do in my spare “relaxing” moments of the day? Would it be boring? Would this something else “fill” me?
That’s all that God requires of us. That we trust Him with step number one. So I trusted Him with step number one. Boy, was I scared. But slowly and surely what I let go of was filled with things that are good for me. (Don’t get me wrong, I’ll still enjoy a good movie but in moderation. I even went a whole 6 days recently without even touching Netflicks! (Then I sang “alleluia”)) These things that now filling my time are still a little scary, but only because they are out of my comfort zone. But I’m getting there. Not perfectly, but I’m getting there.
What about you? Do you currently have a bad habit? Are you sincerely trying to lose the habit? Or are you giving it a half hearted effort with excuses to cover it? Can you find the courage to make ONE change in your life today toward getting rid of that habit? Taking the first step is always the scariest!
You are NOT alone! (Blog Song of the week! “Do Something” hopefully it helps toward motivation!)
By: Sharon Schuler
P.S. Me… I’m on to habit #2…. Raise your hand if you hear “Sugar Addiction” 🙂 LOL!!!