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  • Writer's pictureakeighran5

Ditching the half-assed conviction

Q: ๐—ช๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐˜„๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด๐˜€ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚ ๐—น๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ป๐˜ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—น๐—ผ๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ผ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐Ÿฑ๐Ÿฌ๐—ธ๐—ด??

A: Let me start by quoting James Clear in Atomic Habits as he explains a shift in mentalityโ€ฆ โ€œImagine two people resisting a cigarette. When offered a smoke, the first person says, โ€œNo thanks. Iโ€™m trying to quit.โ€ It sounds like a reasonable response, but this person still believes they are a smoker who is trying to be something else. They are hoping their behavior will change while carrying around the same beliefs. The second person declines by saying, โ€œNo thanks. Iโ€™m not a smoker.โ€ Itโ€™s a small difference, but this statement signals a shift in identity. Smoking was part of their former life, not their current one. They no longer identify as someone who smokes.โ€ So with this in mind, I can tell you that for me at least, the shift in identity was the hardest (and most important) part of the whole transformation. Identifying as a good sleeping, early rising, healthy person who went for daily walks or stints on the exercise bike was an almighty shift from the unhealthy former self that I was escapingโ€ฆ The reality was that the more I did these things, and the more I repeated them over and over and over, the greater the routine became and the more convinced I was that Iโ€™d found the truest version of myself. Each and every time I repeated a habit, it became easierโ€ฆ and every single โ€œpat on the backโ€ that I gave myself went a long, long way in the overall transformationโ€ฆ Small increments, tiny, positive repeated habitsโ€ฆ Over and over and over againโ€ฆ

So maybe next time youโ€™re trying to kick a bad habit, the first thing you should do is ditch the half-assed conviction or terminology of โ€œIโ€™m trying toโ€ฆโ€โ€ฆ If youโ€™re serious about it then you either โ€œareโ€ or you โ€œare notโ€ doing something. End of story in my eyes

- Coach AK

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