How to Break a Bad Habit Forever

How to Break a Bad Habit Forever

Full disclosure: I have some pretty bad habits up my sleeve. Some that I am holding onto for now, because I am not ready to commit to the step of letting go, and others I have been trying to quit for years. If you’re honest with yourself, I’m sure you could admit to having a bad habit or two no matter how close to perfect you are.

The question is how do we kick butt and remove an unhealthy habit from our lifestyle? And how do we find the passion and drive to stay committed to quitting a bad habit?

How to Quit a Bad Habit

PART ONE: Steps to Getting Rid of a Bad Habit

Step One: Acknowledging your bad habit it is holding you back. Ask yourself this important question: “How is this bad habit negatively effecting my lifestyle?” When I was a heavy drinker, for example, I needed to recognize that drinking too much was really preventing me from living the life I truly deserved. I knew this. But I guess  I didn’t want to admit it. So I made myself admit it. I got out a pen and paper and I made a list.

Set Two: Make a list of all the reasons your unhealthy habit is negatively influencing you. I’ll give you an example from my personal life just to help you on your own self discovery process. I used to be a heavy drinker. How did I change that? First, I recognized that my drinking was negatively affecting me. Then I listed all the reasons how it was actually doing that. When I was drinking heavily,  I was feeling behind on my weight-loss and healthy goals. I was also holding myself back from emotional balance because whenever I was drinking heavily, I had a hard time relaxing and being present. Most importantly (the biggest eye opener of them all) my heavy drinking was effecting my relationships with others: I would fight a little more often with my boyfriend and my sisters when I was under the influence. And that was a big no no for me. Making that list really made me want to give up drinking. I couldn’t deny the truth when it was staring me in the face.

Step Three: Figuring out exactly what that bad habit provides you. It’s true though, we all get something positive from our bad habits. And we need to acknowledge that too. You cannot get rid of a bad habit without replacing it with a good one. So you need to ask yourself what that bad habit offers you and how it enhances your life. Do you smoke to relax? Maybe you drink to have a good time? Or perhaps you are an overeater who uses food to cope with anxiety. Whatever it is – figure it out.

Step Four: Replacing your unhealthy bad habit with a new healthy habit. It’s easy to pass up the idea of quitting a bad habit when we program our brains to think that the bad habit we love is actually adding value to our lives. But once we get real deep and honest with ourselves, we can recognize how that bad habit enhances our lives and then figure out a new healthy habit to replace it with. Maybe instead of drinking to relax you will go for a walk or meditate. Maybe instead of overeating to cope with anxiety you read a book or paint your nails. Whatever works for you is what you should do.

PART TWO: Finding The Drive to Change NOW.

Step Five: Discover the reasons why you must change this bad habit now as opposed to later on in life. Have you ever known someone who says they want to change but they never do? There is a reason so many people put off the idea of making a positive change for their lives: They don’t have the motivation to make that change NOW. Instead, they just keep putting it off. How many times have you wanted to start a healthy lifestyle and kept telling yourself, “oh I’ll start on Monday.” Or maybe you were trying to quit indulging on sweet foods but kept telling yourself that the holiday’s were around the corner, “Why not wait until after then?” Find the momentum to change your lifestyle NOW. Ask yourself, “What will happen if I don’t make this change NOW in my life? as opposed to two years from now, or next year or next week?” There has to be something about your situation now in life that will give you the urge and desire to take massive action TODAY. Find the reasons.. reflect on those reasons.. and push yourself forward.

Step Six: Implement new healthy habits. Remember how I said bad habits stick around because we get something good from them? What do you get from your bad habit right now? You have to be getting something good or else you wouldn’t be keeping that bad habit around! Does your bad habit relax you? Maybe it gives you something to do and keeps you busy when you are bored. Perhaps your bad habit has become such a routine part of your life that you don’t even remember what that good feeling is that you got from it. Dig deep. Figure it out. You can’t give up a bad habit without replacing it with something new. That’s just the truth. If you don’t find new ways to feel good, you’ll just give up a bad habit, feel bad, and then go back to it! So don’t do that.

 

All of these Steps and more for sustainable bad habit kicking are outlined in my free E-Guide. Come grab it by clicking the button below and start making positive changes to your life today!

badhabitsquittinge-guide

 

 

My “Big Leap” Story.

My “Big Leap” Story.

I have been thinking a lot, long and hard about my life. The choices I have made in the past that led me to where I am now. So many people feel like they want to take that big life leap but they are scared

What started it all:

Hitting rockbottom. In my career. See before I was a life coach and business owner, I was working for the big man in the city, running the daily grind at CBS News. And for a while, I loved it.  I was eating living and breathing my job. I loved it. I thrived there. I wanted nothing more than to be the best producer I could possibly be for a company I totally adored. So much news obsession. I loved it.

Then one day I got a offered the “big break” promotion I was waiting for.

I finally felt like my hard work was paying off. My years of 12 plus hour days were finally fruitful. My life was changing. I finally felt like I had “made it.” Except.. I didn’t.

I had a serious life change and a really bad bully.

The hours were overnight. My life totally changed. My position was very challenging and extremely overwhelming. My boss was a bully who was constantly talking down to me and throwing me under the bus for things. I felt like I was watching my life fall apart. The reputation I spent so long trying to build to be successful was crumbling. It was like nothing I had ever experienced in my five years there.

Working for her made the last year of my professional career at CBS a living hell. I came home crying more times than I could count. It wasn’t just a job to me, it was my life, and so when things started to fall in my career, I started to crumble too.  I started drinking constantly to cope with the stress and anxiety related to work. My boyfriend came home on several occasions to find me passed out on the floor. It was a shameful, shameful time in my life. I felt totally out of control of my happiness. The long over night hours of midnight to nine am were draining me of my energy, and on top of that, the bullying was so constant that I just wanted to run away and hide.

I tried talking to human resources but in that industry, it is hard to voice your mistreatment. Despite everything I went through, H.R. told me I had two choices: I could report the incident and get an X on my back for the rest of my career, or I could fight it and push through it knowing that one day she wouldn’t be my boss anymore.

I had a third option: Preparing my exit.

So I started looking for an exit .

I applied for jobs left and right – searching for any opportunity to get out of there and move on to something bigger and better. When nothing pulled through, I started looking for anything at all to pay the bills. But nothing felt right to me.  So I made a decision.

I decided that from that moment on, I was never going to let someone else dictate my happiness. If I was miserable in my career, which was my whole life at the time, then I needed to take action and do something about it. I needed to change my life. Even if I wasn’t being handed a new job on a silver platter. I needed to take action myself.

If no one is going to give me an opportunity, I am going to make one for myself.

So I left. I left the company and decided that even though I didn’t have anything lined up, everything would be okay.

I knew that if I did that, there would be tough consequences: Financial consequences. Living situation consequences. Some big adult decisions would have to be made. And I made them together with my boyfriend. I quit my job, left my career and moved our apartment into a storage unit while Matt and I moved out to Connecticut with his family. It was a really tough choice full of a lot of compromises and sacrifices. But the one thing that mattered that I wouldn’t compromise in the process was my happiness.

On my last day at CBS, I saw her in the hallway. I turned to the woman who was responsible for causing me so much unhappiness and I told her “I wish you nothing but the best.” And truthfully, I did. And I still do. She taught me a valuable lesson that I am so grateful for: Never settle for less than you deserve when It comes to your happiness and self worth.

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Moving on Out…

After that, I decided it was time to go into recovery mode. I caught up on sleep, organized my life, and took some time reflecting on my happiness and my passions – what was this all for?  Everything happens for a reason, so why did this happen exactly? Why did I work so hard to build a career just to walk away from it all? There had to be some deeper purpose for my life. And then I founded What is Perfection. And it all made sense. Not everything is going to magically fall into place the second you shake things up. Change takes time. And I am in it for the long haul. My business is the beautiful baby child I created in a moment of darkness, that now shows other people how to pull out of their rock bottoms. And it’s fucking beautiful. I love it.

Don’t Ever Settle..

I guess the moral of the story  here is to never settle for being unhappy, but also to remember and recognize that life isn’t always what you expect it to be. If I continued on my life journey with the goal of being a successful news producer at CBS with 25 plus years under my belt, I would have been compromising my happiness in so many ways. By changing my purpose, and realizing that my main goal was happiness, so many new doors opened, but the CBS door had to close too. And that’s okay. Having the expectations that life is supposed to be perfect is simply not a way to live. Sometimes things work out differently than we originally had planned, but when we decide to be open to new possibilities, it makes life even more amazing.

So be clear in your mission to find happiness, but always be flexible in your approach. Don’t be afraid to close doors and open new ones. There is a world of possibility out there for you.

 

 

Are You Constantly Trying to Arrive in Your Life?

Are You Constantly Trying to Arrive in Your Life?

In my own practice and life, I am a goal getter. I am constantly striving towards things, taking massive action and always trying to “get to the end goal.”

Yup. I am a goal digger at heart. I love pushing myself to be the best I can be. Like so many of us out there. But being that type A comes with it’s disadvantages too. It makes me constantly feel like I am “never where I am supposed to be.” Like I am always trying to “get some place.”

And while I may accomplish a lot in my life, I am constantly left wondering, “okay, now what?” “what’s next?” Even when amazing great things happen. And this has been so true of my life this year. Especially since so much has happened.

 

Matt and I have a house now. We are engaged. My business has blossomed in such a beautiful way – it’s like everything I was striving for – that balance, success and happiness – is here.

And I’m left scratching my head like, “okay now what?”

I had to stop for minute last night and say, “woaaah hold up Lauren.”

“Now what” has always been my mindset. It’s been one achievement after the next after the next. And even when I fail to meet my goals I am constantly creating new ones.

But I am here. So now what?

Now? Now I live. Now I enjoy. Now I embrace the happiness.

Now I constantly stop trying to get somewhere and just actually appreciate the now.
It’s a lesson we can all learn from time to time. And I needed to share it.
Stop trying to constantly get somewhere. Appreciate where you are right now.

I used to never smile…

I used to never smile…

Before I was the “What is Perfection” girl,
I was actually, the “What the heck is wrong with her” girl.
because seriously, I was super miserable in my life.
It was so bad, that in 2009 I attempted suicide. 
My abusive boyfriend had pushed me over the edge. I had enough. 
And I wanted to give up on my life.
So I grabbed a bottle of pills. The next thing I knew,
I was waking up in the hospital with a second chance:
That rock-bottom moment changed everything.
Because I realized that I had a choice:
I could either let my life control me,
or I could fight for my happiness and change it all.
I knew in my heart that I didn’t want live my life unhappy and insecure.
And I knew there was more to living than hating life.
I just had to fight for it.
The lesson here is that our rock bottom moments can be the most powerful breakthrough self discovery experiences… if we let them.
“Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood.”

The Five Powerful Lessons that Changed My Entire Life.

The Five Powerful Lessons that Changed My Entire Life.

Secret time: I am building a self-improvement manifesto. Yes…I know… crazy me. As if I don’t have enough to do already. I have such a big to-do list right no for WIP-  running the Facebook group, launching the youtube channel and the podcast (See 1 | 2| 3 | If you’re interested.)  Not to mention the Brand New me Course goes live in five days! But yes.. I am gathering all the best most strongest self improvement tips and putting them into a book.

Let me tell you, it’s going to be a really really big resource by the time I am done. And I am so excited that I’ve been taking the time to really get clear about these strategies and self improvement tools I use in my coaching practice. It is helping me feel inspired and motivated to keep serving all you awesome ladies out there! Plus, it’s letting me perfect my expertise, allows me to be a better life coach and do what I love doing the best to my ability!

HELPING PEOPLE.

I have too many tricks up my sleeve that sometimes I get bogged down trying to figure out what to share on a regular basis. There are so many life experiences that have shaped the lessons I share with my clients – and I am constantly learning more each and every day.

So in breaking it down for my own research, I decided it was time to share the five most vital powerful lessons that drastically shaped my life.

These were the biggest game changing mindsets that transformed my happiness and my confidence, how I live, how I feel, and the person I am.

Ready for me to share? AHH YAY! GOOD! Because that’s what this post is all about!

The 5 Most Valuable Life Lessons for Happiness

-Putting yourself first is not selfish. It’s sanity.

A lot of women have this belief that they need to continuously be something for other people before they can be something for themselves. I’m including myself when I talk about this type of thinking. See, I grew up with a very loving and selfless mother. To this day she is constantly putting others before herself. She is an amazing wonderful nurturing woman, and I love her to death – but her way of living was not something that came natural to me. It felt like I was suffering when I lived life constant trying to put myself and my needs on the back burner. Adapting this mindset didn’t bring me any joy in my life growing up, but for a long time, I felt like this was something I needed to “make work” in my life. I needed to put other people before me. I needed to try to make the best decisions for other people – because after all, that is what my learned behavior was in life!

Making decisions based on other people’s needs is wrong. And putting yourself first, while some may call it selfish, is actually the best most powerful thing you can do for your happiness. If I’m too tired to go to  a party, I won’t go. If I need a vacation day, I call out sick. If I feel like I need a break form the chores and household responsibilities, I am open and honest with my partner about needing a time out. The truth is, you cannot be your best for other people, if you are not the best for yourself first.

It took me a long time, but now when I make decisions, I 100 percent make them based on how they make ME feel… not how I think they will make others feel. It’s my life. And if you’re reading this – it’s your life ….do don’t let someone else dictate it.

-What you resist continues to persist. 

Constantly thinking about avoiding money troubles only brings more money troubles. Feeling like you don’t want to live a life of scarcity only makes you feel more empty. Continuously trying to avoid looking at the scale when you struggle with your weight and body image only makes you feel more disconnected and stuck in your unhealthy lifestyle. If you want to fix something, you need to face it. You need to analyze it. You need to see the truth for what it really is and then take massive action to change it.

Whether it is your unhealthy relationship, your unhealthy eating habits, or your awkward relationship with money – if you want to make something better – you need to look it in the face for the big scary monster it is and DO something about it.

-The best thing you can do for yourself is invest in your future. 

I’m not talking about going back to school. And no, I am not talking about buying that new sexy car that lets you get from point a to point b with confidence. I am talking about PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT. It is the greatest most powerful tool that to this day is still at the top of my tool box. Growing and bettering myself is my number one priority in life, and if you are trying to live a happier more fulfilling future – then you got to up your rank on where you value that in your own life.

I see so many women unhappy and stuck in their lives – frustrated by their unhealthy relationships, their lack of self confidence, or their inability to feel financially abundant…. Why do they feel this way? Well because they are stuck. And they need help letting go of their limiting beliefs… much like I needed to way back when before I became a life coach. But the only way to do that is by investing in your worth.

I’ve maxed out credit cards to pay for self improvement seminars… I have spent my last hard earned dollar on crazy Barnes and Noble self help book binges… I have even withdrawn money from my 401k to invest in making my life better. Do I regret any of those purchase? HELL TO THE NO. They were actually the best decisions I made for my life. Sometimes adding to your debt (if it’s to make you a better more amazing person) drastically changes your financial situation in the long run *yes.. for the better.*

-Take risks. Take risks. Take risks. (Do you hear me?) 

I have never in my life taken a risk that didn’t scare me. That’s why we use that big scary R word to call it what it is: A super scary chance on something that we have no idea what the outcome will be. Financial risks, relationship risks, moving risks, career risks, they are THE BEST MOST WONDERFUL opportunities from the universe if you take them.

When your gut is telling you to do something different – it is because you are probably settling for less than you deserve. And in order to get out of that life, you need to take what my friend Jen calls “big messy scary action.” Seriously… take it. Do it. A leap of faith is the most beautiful thing in the world because that’s when the real you come out.

-An unfulfilling life is not worth living.

I’ll leave it at that. Don’t kill yourself… just go fucking do something about it.

You deserve THE BEST.

xoxox

 

 

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