Posted by: kgnarlym | December 13, 2012

Old Habits Die Slower Than New Habits Grow

The importance of establishing Good Habits cannot be underestimated! I think, in accordance with the principle of Displacement, that is the best way to implement behavior&choice changes into our lives.

When I teach my yoga classes I generally take Time at the outset to allow everyone to clear their mind, and what I tell the attendees is that if the mind won’t give up it’s contents readily (let’s be real, whose mind does?!) then our alternative is to fill the mind up with so much Now-awareness (breath, body, etc) that there is no room for our typical mental cargo.

The same principle can be used with our daily choices and habits. I won’t bother disclosing my specific Bad Habits, but trust that I have them. The silver lining here, however, is that I see a clear path to changing them in establishing different habits (hopefully “Good” habits) to gradually take up the energy that fuels those old patterns.

Tai Chi was the first Practice to help me establish better habits. Back in 2005 I was up to a good deal of shenanigannery, but Tai Chi gave me a place to focus my attention and power. Not long after, I also began my Yoga Practice. Both have proven to be enduring, far moreso than the short-sighted exploits of my teenage years, and have brought a lot of Positivity into my Life.

I give due credit and grattitude to the many Teachers I’ve had along the way, but the fact is, Everything begins with YOU. It isn’t the x-amount of classes I’ve taken, or the fact that any of my teachers have been particularly amazing. What gets the results is a personal dedication to the Practice.

You can’t do the work if you never show up.

Any type of capital-P Practice has that same foundation. It is a matter of diligently showing up over and over, to do the occaisonally mundane, frustrating, difficult, ordinary, boring, laborious, glorious, all of the above.

The idea of making consistent, however small, advances is crucial. What’s more, those gains, even if they be miniscule, are augmented by the fact that what is truly being cultivated is the dedication to the Practice. Just by showing up, a powerful statement is made and this in itself creates sustaining energy. A good Practice fuels itself exponentially.

All of this is stemming from the observations I have had of my own NEW Practice of Object Writing. I may have babbled on the matter briefly (or long-windedly, again, let’s be Real!) in a previous post so I won’t explain it in specifics, but today marks the second week of almost-Daily Practice. I am pround of myself for sticking with it, and have begun to see the fruits of this dedication.

This Practice only asks ten minutes of my Time, and I find that I eagerly carve out that Time in my day. That’s ten fewer minutes to indulge in the habits I hope to make obsolete.

The Practice of establishing Practice is helpful because once we determine what we REALLY want from Life, we will have tools to implement behaviors and choices that will manifest those goals. To sit back and say “I want” is relatively powerless, but when our habitual actions align with those desires, we not only create Energy for meeting those goals but we also have less Energy to dump into self-defeating patterns we’ve picked up along the Journey.

So, Reader, I encourage you to find a Practice to invest in. The short-term and long-term payoffs are inevitbale and worthwhile. Don’t overthink it.

Drink one glass of water every night before going to bed.
Eat Breakfast.
Free-write for five minutes.
Take a walk.
Sit quietly for one minute.

Find something manageable, even if it doesn’t have an obvious association with any of your personal goals. The point is to create subtle momentum. Pick a simple notion,
and
KEEP SHOWING UP!

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