Week 4 – Old Dog, Old Tricks

Wow, bad habits do die hard. Week 1 & 2 were awesome, then week 3 came and the world started to spin out of control and I barely had time to shower never mind do all of my sits and reading. I almost felt like giving up I was so disappointed in myself. But then I remembered a time, long ago, when I beat a bad habit. So I know I can do this, because mediocrity (which I have mastered) is also pretty boring.
When I was in my early 20s I smoked. People who know me now are kind of shocked, it just doesn’t suit who I am. Well, it didn’t suit me then either, but it was a bad habit left over from trying to fit in in High School. I had tried to quit many times, for all of the good reasons: money, health, bad breath. But none of it worked. Finally, what I really hated about smoking came to light: I was a complete SLAVE to this habit. I HATED the feeling of not being free, so I began to make the changes I needed to get it out of my life.
Reading Og is funny, because I did this so intuitively. First, I began a good habit. So I wasn’t focusing on quitting smoking, I began to focus on exercising. I got back in the pool. I was a competitive swimmer most of my life so it felt natural, even though I was in terrible shape. I also stopped hanging out with people I smoked with, and I quit coffee and alcohol for several months. I sacrificed a lot. And it worked. I killed that habit, replaced it with a way better one (I was a “slave” to exercise for many years afterwards, hopefully I can do this again!), and sacrificed to do it all. And all without keeping my focus on the negative, or what I didn’t want to do. I focused on what I did want – freedom.
I read an article (http://bit.ly/1MMWsuv) where the author talks about how practicing a new behaviour feels inauthentic in the beginning. I think sometimes we fail to push ourselves out of our comfort zone because we don’t want to be fake, or appear not like ourselves. (Spending less time with my friends when I was trying to quit sure felt false.) But it is like Mark said this week, we are “loyal to our identity because it makes us feel secure.” That is one thing I noticed in my cubicle job, everyone was scared and just wanted to feel secure. I thought it was just the great pension, that they were looking for financial security, but I think it’s about more than that. This whole process feels a little strange and weird sometimes, but it’s good to shake up the comfortable and really challenge ourselves.
This is how we get closer to who we really are.

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7 thoughts on “Week 4 – Old Dog, Old Tricks

  1. fairlyone

    I can relate. I’ve quit smoking, again, but before MKMMA started. I’ve gone back to the gym though since MKMMA started and in part MKMMA is the reason although there are a multitude of reasons that I’ve gone back to working out. I’ve missed it!
    Now to get some time back into my schedule! I too am in overwhelm but the more I do the easier it gets.

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    1. jccoombs Post author

      I know! I miss working out a lot, not sure why I make so little time for it these days. It can be overwhelming with everything there is to do, but stick with it. Quitting smoking was the most empowering thing I’ve ever done. Good luck!

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  2. masterkeyjac

    It’s true that we can only change or learn when we step outside our comfort zones. This week has been a challenge for me too. Safety in numbers, lol. You and we, will get through this, because we owe ourselves the best life possible. It’s so much easier to support others on their journey than it is ourselves sometimes.

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