If you’ve ever tried to give up something that isn’t good for you, you know what a struggle it can be.
When the stakes are high, quitting habits like smoking and overeating can be extremely difficult. Turns out, we humans are masters at the art of resistance. Resistance is that voice that convinces us that we know more than the experts, that we deserve the treat, that we’ll start our healthy habit tomorrow, that one more day, one more bite, puff or indulgence won’t make a difference.
Based on his research, psychiatrist Judson Brewer has found a way that we can observe the process of trigger-behavior-habit process using the mindful technique of curiosity and increase of chances of quitting by, like, a lot.
Instead of fighting our urges, we indulge them but pay attention to what’s happening in our momentary experience. We become curious and attention to the whole experience of smoking for example. We pay attention to the urge, to lighting the cigarette or turning on the e-cig, to the smell, the taste, our inhalation, the release, the benefit, and then…the drawbacks. We pay attention to the whole experience without judgment to see what we really get, when we get caught up in our behaviors.
When we observe our unhealthy behavior over time in a non-judgmental manner, we become disenchanted with the habit and less interested in doing it.
Such is the magic of mindfulness.