I'd like to think I'm a bit of an expert in this area. First of all I have a very addictive personality so when I like something it's hard for me to let it go.
Second of all I have overcome my fair share of habits including;
A Packet a day smoker.
Yep, I used to smoke a packet of smokes a day from my teens to my early 20's. I was so addicted that I would chain smoke 2-3 smokes before breakfast.
I used to drink A lot of alcohol. I'd drink to get wasted 3-5 nights per week.
I'd have a weekly ritual where every Sunday I would get a Large McChicken meal with an additional cheeseburger. I'd put the chips on the burgers and dip the burger in sweet and sour sauce. Yep it was an actual ritual I had.
Sugar & chocolate binger
Seriously sugar and chocolate addiction and binging is something I have fought against all of my life if I'm going to be honest, because the truth is chocolate is just YUM! And I also believe I'm a self medicator as in I find habits to drown my sorrows and stress and quite often it is food.
If I could have one love in this world it would have to be coffee. Quite recently though I gave it up. I realised that coffee does not help anyone with anxiety. It was adding to it and making my body feel more stressed. So reluctantly and for better health I gave it away.
Mind you I've been drinking coffee since I was in high school and I would have easily drank at least 5 instant a day.
Obviously when I moved to Sydney it was proper coffee which I'd have up to 3 a day (which is a lot).
So now I've proven to you that I'm just like you and have had bad habits also I'm going to give you some tips on how I overcame them all.
1. First of all it takes at least 21 days to form a new habit. So all you need to really do is replace an old one with a new one.
2. Replace your old habit with a healthy alternative. A lot of our bad habits are just that... bad habits so all you have to do is detach the circumstances or the environment in which your habits thrive.
So for example I used to always have coffee with a smoke and I'd always smoke in the car. So when I was giving up I gave up coffee momentarily and replaced it with chocolate milk (I know).
I also stopped smoking in the car and chewed gum instead.
So for chocolate addiction you could eat a healthy alternative instead of the actual chocolate. So a piece of fruit or a healthy chocolate version.
3. Like with any goal you need to focus on the reason why you want to give it up. That is what gets you through. So for me giving up coffee I know would improve my quality of life by reducing anxiety. So I would think about that.
Would I prefer anxiety or the coffee?
Same as when I gave up smoking. Did I want to make myself terribly sick? and continue to have trouble breathing OR did I want to have a better quality of life and be as healthy as I could be?
Here is the thing though. You WILL not give up any habit just because someone says you should and not because you think you should. The only time you will is when you are ready and when it is something deep down you really want to do.