How many times have you thought ‘I’ll never do it again’ or that ‘I’ll do it differently next time’? According to research, saying what we will not do in the future can result in a “behavioral ironic rebound effect”. In simpler terms, you are very likely to do it again. This may sound a little unmotivating, however what if I told you there is a way around it?
The first thing that comes to mind is the beauty behind waking up. Particularly the love hate relationship with my alarms. I catch myself searching for the snooze button and thinking ‘five more minutes’. This delay in starting my day will cause an unnecessary rush in the morning. I find that the odd time I do get up from my bed when the alarm rings the first time, my mood remains calm and collected. It is unprovoked. Left untouched before it gets modelled like play dough throughout the day.
Turn the alarm off once and once only. Do not let this small yet important habit have any impact on how you start your day. Personally, the ringtone drives me crazy. I think I would be doing myself a favor by rolling out of bed when I hear it the first time.
Takeaways and eating in bars and restaurants form a part of my routine. Sometimes I explain my choices by blaming the lack of time. I could be celebrating something or simply hanging out with a friend. And here it is. The ‘I won’t order again for a long time’. The ‘long time’ can become as soon as the following week. I’d like to turn this around and say ‘This was my last time spending money on a takeaway or restaurant for the month’. Make a decision and most importantly stick by it.
Overall, the concept of treating yourself is a trap we place ourselves in. It is very easy to fall into a mindset where buying unnecessary items becomes a simple treat. Yes, treat yourself, but maybe when it becomes a habit that influences your finances negatively, it’s time to think twice prior.
I had items in my shopping basket online for a few days. The day I added them, I did not exactly question my choices. This habit of treating myself is one I constantly and carefully look at. The following day, I removed three things from the basket. Yes, I liked those items, however upon further conversation with myself, I could happily live without them.
Procrastination. Do I need to say more? How does one go about making any changes about it? I think once you catch yourself procrastinating, you’re on the right path. This habit can be difficult to completely change, however, if you begin to look at your excuses rationally. Sometimes breaking down a task into smaller pieces can prevent procrastination when you’re trying to complete a task that is a little overwhelming.
Source: “Planning What Not to Eat: Ironic Effects of Implementation Intentions Negating Unhealthy Habits” from Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin