How to break a bad habit

mechanicYou may not have any bad habits, but chances are you know someone who does. I have plenty of bad habits, so my interest in the subject is fairly keen.

I dip into the TED Talks library fairly often, and I found Judson Brewer’s presentation, A simple way to break a bad habit. I need a more effective way to break bad habits, and Judson provides it. His advice aligns beautifully with Brené Brown’s guidance. They both inspire us to cultivate our sense of curiosity, and to set aside self-criticism. They tell us to view our problems as sources of understanding rather than as threats or messages of condemnation. Our bad habits are teaching tools, according to them.

Judson cites the example of a woman he advised to notice the details of her experience the next time she lit a cigarette. This noticing is called mindfulness. The result was that she recognized, at long last, he said, “that cigarettes taste like shit.” It’s much easier to quit smoking with that point of view replacing the notion that smoking provides pleasure.

Psychiatrist and addiction expert Judson Brewer researches mindfulness techniques that effectively help quell cravings of all kinds.—TED Talks

Three resources are available to us for free, and I consider them a profound advance over learning opportunities when I was young. They are: Ted Talks, BigThink, and to a lesser extent, YouTube. If we make good use of these resources I am convinced we could eliminate an enormous amount of pain on this planet.

Your thoughts?

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