Do you think that purposefully directing your daily activities is a good way to change habits? It seems like the answer is yes and Charles Duhigg, author of several apparently good books on habit and productivity, says that there is evidence in support.
I would like to find a person to exchange some interpersonal contact with each morning. That person would share with me what they are doing that day — what they want to accomplish, if they are afraid of anything, what they want to avoid — and I would reciprocate. The goal would be to enter the day from a position of control. Contrast that with the way that I seem to go through the day — letting myself be the subject of what happens around me. Perhaps that would change the way I react to stressors and help me choose positive responses rather than negative ones.
Have you or anyone else had success with this method? Or just some experience that you’d like to share?
I just finished reading this post about a college runner’s descent into and ascent from an eating disorder: https://minneapolisrunning.com/confessions-anorexic-runner/
Modulo the fact that I am not an elite athlete, my pursuit of running accomplishments played an eerily similar role in the development of my eating disorder as it did for the post’s author.
Well, in the interest of full disclosure, my eating has seriously regressed these past several days. I have not been able to keep up with my three “meals” + “breakfast” routine for several days.
As I said in my previous post, habits are hard to break. What is easy to do is add restrictions to existing habits. What is hard is going the other direction. In other words, once I’ve restricted something it is almost impossible to add it back.
Once I have dropped something that was a normal and healthy part of my routine, adding it back becomes like a reward or a treat. And, as I wrote about before, anything like a reward is strictly prohibited.
This is hard.
The other difficult thing I have dealt with recently is an obsession with the ingredients of some of the “meals” that I am eating. Of course these meals are really just protein bars which makes the ingredient list even more obvious.
Which would you rather eat?
Habits are powerful. When I first started on this recovery plan, the positive habit was easy to follow. Then, little by little, the habits started changing. Every day I started eating my “meals” later and later. Then I started eating less and less. Now I’ve started eating only part of each meal.
Keeping those bad habits is just as easy as keeping the good ones. Phrased differently but saying the same thing, bad habits are as hard to break as good habits.
I need to get back to eating all my meals (and regularly). That will take a serious turnaround. But I don’t see why I can’t do it — I did it before.
I think that recovery is a process of constant adjustment. I hope that adjusting these bad habits can get me back on track.