It doesn’t take much effort to start something. It is keeping at it that can be difficult. I’ve been reading a lot about productivity over the last few years. Most of the resources have been very good reads. They leave me thinking, “Hey, I can do that.” I try to take the information and implement it into my daily “routine.” Usually within a few days, maybe a week, I’ll miss a turn on the habit and try to get back on track. More often than not, it does not happen. I’ll tell myself, “Well, I missed it, but I don’t think that is will affect the process.” Over the next few days, the habit has been failed at and forgotten. Such is life, right?
Every once in awhile, though, things will stick a little better and it will be a long running habit. For instance, smoking was something of a vice for me for a good decade. Off and on, I would stop and not think about it. Maybe I just didn’t have the money to throw at cigarettes, maybe I was sick and just didn’t smoke for however long that lasted. I went 10 months without em, then started right back up. At that time, breaking that habit involved building other habits. I took up daily runs on the treadmill and started eating healthier. It wasn’t hard to stick with. I don’t even know what happened, but one day, I traded the healthier habits for the smoking. I don’t think it was even a conscious decision. It just kind of happened.
I’m going on 7 months without them this year. I thought about what was different about this time around. It occurred to me that I wasn’t calling it “quitting” this time. I was just referring to it as something I wasn’t doing. Maybe, subconsciously, using the term “quitting” is a bit more negative. Maybe my brain sees quitting as failing and since I failed at smoking, I started right back up again. (This seems odd, but my brain, as most are, is a strange beast) This time around, I just stopped, didn’t really call it much of anything. I just didn’t do it. It’s been nice so far, and I don’t intend to stop stopping smoking in the foreseeable future.