John Crnokrak & Associates

How to be


How Do You Break Self-Defeating Habits?

A Jesuit priest told our class in college we all have a tendency to be slaves to our habits. He also said, there is certainly a way out for everyone. He said, simply defined, a habit is a repeated way of doing something…of thinking, acting, feeling, responding and so on.

What I’ve learned is that beneficial habits, such as finding right procedures and abandoning wrong ones is always available to us. There are harmful habits, such as worrying about tomorrow and meeting daily challenges with negative reactions. What I learned early in life is; all harmful habits can be broken! And really there is no exception to that principle. We can, if we want, empty our lives of destructive habits, just as we might empty a pail of unwanted junk.

In my coaching of executives, I remind them that habits are result of our conditioning; meaning, they were acquired through association with others with the same habits. Habits are usually picked up by imitating other people or by following their example.

There are a couple ways we can conquer unwanted habits. One method is to attack the habitual desire with a new desire. If we want to stop smoking we must introduce a new desire that is contrary to our desire to smoke. In doing so we need to encourage the desire to save the money that we would’ve spent on cigarettes, and show our friends how strong and determined we are, while in the process improving our health.

But a more effective way is through the powerful idea of “non-identification.” Which means we break the habit by ceasing to identify with it further. What I’ve learned is to identify with the habit means that we take the habit as our self, but we are not the same thing as our habit. If we have the habit of wearing a certain color jacket, we certainly are not the same thing as that jacket; we are merely wearing it for a time. Likewise, we are not the same thing as our habit. In essence, we and our habits are two entirely separate things.

So I’ll end this brief blog with reminding anyone who reads it, that we not fight our unwanted habits, we need only to focus and eliminating them. I challenge everyone to move forward in their life mastering a positive power/thinking process. Too many times we all have the tendency to think loosely, mechanically, without designed purpose. And in the process, we fail to realize our mind possesses dozens of self-serving powers such as attention and flexibility.

So start now to take time to evaluate your habits and especially those you feel are creating a destructive situation in your life. And as you move forward learn how to dissolve destructive habits. We all need to realize that habits are merely conditioned attitudes! Try having an adventure for yourself and learned that through adventure is self-discovery.

All unwanted habits can be replaced with beneficial ones. Effective immediately work hard not to identify with an unwanted habit. Keep in mind that it is something merely acquired; it is not a part of the real you. Good luck and best wishes. John

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