Like it or not our day to day life is just a long sequence of habits and patterns. We get so used to doing the same things, in the same manner, every day that we sometimes don’t even realize we’re doing them. It’s like turning on the autopilot mode.
You want an example? Has it ever happened to you that you just got something done but seconds later you’re unsure if you actually did? It’s like you’ve completely blanked out, yet you were still doing stuff. We often fly over routines like brushing teeth or showering without being actually present or in the moment. We’ve done these things so many times that we can do them without actively thinking. They’re simply habits. Our brains like that – repeating actions with a certain outcome gives a sense of security.
While this makes me slightly terrified because…well, the realization that we’re autopiloting through half our life does spark some existential thoughts, it also opens the topic of habits and how they influence our life.
If there’s one thing that can either make you or break you, it’s habits.
A big chunk of our successes and failures are rooted in the habits we allow ourselves to have.
I’ve got good news and bad news here.
If you muster the self-discipline and determination you can build amazing habits that will keep you healthy and continuously improve your life. What’s even better, keeping up with these habits gets even easier with time. They’ll carry you through loss of motivation or hardships – phases that we all face at different points of our lives.
At the same time, it’s hard to break already existing bad habits and it’s just oh so easy to let go and carry on with the autopilot mode.
But you don’t want that! You want to reach your goals! And if your goal is losing weight and becoming healthier, there are a few bad habits you’ll need to drop.
Bad habits that prevent you from losing weight
1. Eating in front of the TV
The easiest way to indulge in junk food and empty calories is to snack in front of a screen. Having your mind occupied with the story on the TV, your taste buds will lead the parade and quickly bring you to overconsumption.
Practice mindful eating.
Focus on having complete, satiating meals at relatively consistent times. This will minimize your urge for snacks. Listen to your body and don’t keep eating after you’re full.
Related reads: 4 Tips that helped me quit binge eating
2. Eating too fast
When eating too quickly you’re more likely to miss your body’s fullness cues and overeat. Take your time with meals and savor your food. Again – practice mindful eating.
You can start by taking smaller bites and chewing your food more. Pay closer attention to how your body reacts – do you feel more energized? Does it make you sleepy? How fast do you start feeling full?
3. Overdoing it with take outs
Let’s face it, take-outs can rarely be qualified as healthy meals, just the opposite. Highly processed and with ridiculous amounts of sugar, salt, and fats – that type of food is poor in nutritional value but will quickly bring you over your recommended caloric intake.
Of course, it’s best if you take the time and cook your own meals. This does require some planning and discipline, especially if you have a full schedule. Look at it as an investment in your health and put it high up in your priority list. Meal prep helps a ton!
4. Consuming sugary drinks
If you’re a heavy soda drinker or can’t start your morning without a fancy Starbucks frappuccino, you can lose some weight by just dropping this habit.
I know it’s an addiction and it won’t be easy – after all, these types of drinks are loaded with sugar, which is highly addictive. Remember that giving up these sugary drinks will greatly benefit your health.
Studies show that high sugar intake is linked to increased inflammation levels, obesity, and insulin resistance. 
5. Poor sleeping schedule
Did you know that bad or not enough sleep can cause your food cravings to spike? The quality of your sleep (or lack thereof) influences the two hormones regulating appetite – leptin (decreases appetite) and ghrelin (stimulates appetite) .
When you’re underslept, your body produces more ghrelin and less leptin leading to spike in hunger.
And this is just one of the negatives that come from sleep deprivation. As someone who’s struggled with sleep for years, I can assure you that poor sleep can absolutely wreak havoc on your hormonal balance and overall health.
Focus on creating new sleeping habits. Going to bed and getting up at roughly the same time each day is a great start.
Another thing that helped me improve my sleep quality was CBD oil. If you want to try it too, make sure to choose a high-quality one without any unnecessary side-ingredients.
Related reads: 6 Months using CBD oil: My experience
Breaking habits is hard and, unfortunately, building new ones can be just as challenging.
What can help you with building new habits and a new lifestyle:
1. Have a plan and write it down
Having your goals and steps to achieving them written down can help you with keeping yourself accountable and serves as a constant reminder of why you’ve initiated that lifestyle change in the first place.
2. Get your family on board
It’s much easier to change habits if you have the support of your closed ones. Maybe they even join you! This way you can hold each other accountable.
Meditation can be quite a powerful tool to keep you focused and reduce distractions. It does take some practice to get the most of it. Luckily, there are plenty of guided meditation apps such as Headspace and Insight Timer out there that come very useful and I highly recommend.
Do you have any further tips? Struggling with any of these bad habits?
Leave me a comment below and let’s chat about it!