I was recently in Facebook, and I saw someone refer to herself as a “hoarder of old habits.” The term actually describes most of us because that’s what our brains do. But it made me stop and think about the old habits that I am hoarding. Here are a few I came up with:
· I tell the people that I love, “I love you” on a regular basis.
· I eat when I am stressed.
· I listen to hard rock music to get me out of a funk when I’ve had a bad day (always a surprise to those who don’t know me well!)
· I feel shame and fear every time I have to confront someone about something unpleasant.
· I make coffee every morning as soon as I get up.
· I beat myself up for not being good enough when I feel I am not producing enough.
· I brush my teeth and wash my face every night before bed.
Now, as you can see, there are habits on this list that I want to continue hoarding. I love that I am in the habit of telling people I love them. It’s important for me to say those words, and I always mean them. I’m going to keep that habit until I die.
But there are other habits that I am working on. Eating when I am stressed does not serve me. It doesn’t help me reach any of my goals, and I have been working on cleaning that habit out of my life for a couple of years. I am proud to say that even though I still do it, I almost always recognize that I am doing it. I stop and acknowledge what I am doing and the reason for it. Even though I don’t always stop, I have gotten to the point that I can say, “I see you stress eating! I’m coming for you!”
I have made real progress toward cleaning this habit out of my life. In fact, I’ve made some real progress toward cleaning all of the negative habits I listed above out of my life. But it is a process, and I am very cognizant of that process.
What habits are you hoarding? Your temptation will be to list only negative things as habits, but we all have thousands of habits, and many of them are habits you want to keep! Take a moment to list 10 habits you have and alternate one you want to keep with one you want to work on.
This exercise will help you articulate what you want to work on, but it will also help you to celebrate how fantastic you already are at taking care of yourself! We don’t stop to celebrate the things we love about ourselves enough. Take this moment to list your habits and celebrate your commitment to working on a future version of you. I would love for you to share some of your habits you plan to continue hoarding in the comments. Until next time, much love!