Reasons Why Changing Habits Is Hard

Undoubtedly, changing habits is hard since it requires fundamental shifts in our behaviors, thought patterns, and lifestyle choices. Our brains are wired to seek comfort in routine and repetition, making it difficult to break free from ingrained habits. However, with time, effort, and patience, the likelihood of transforming lives through habit change only increases. The team at Consumer Opinion Guide has brought this ultimate guide that helps you understand what might keep you stuck in the old habits that don’t serve you well.

The primary reasons changing habits is hard

It’s easy to say that our brains seek the comfort of routine, but things are a bit more complicated, and there are several reasons why people find it hard to change their ways and stick to new ways of life:

  1. Habits are deeply ingrained in our brains
  2. Comfort means stability
  3. There is an addictive aspect to habits
  4. Social and environmental factors play a part
  5. Changing habits requires discipline
  6. People are naturally resistant to change
  7. There is often a lack of motivation
  8. Habits can be a consequence of addiction or psychiatric disorder

Changing habits is hard because they are deeply ingrained in the brain

The habits are deeply ingrained in our brains, making them hard to break. That being said, it takes a lot of effort and conscious action to create new pathways in the brain and replace old habits with new ones. In order to change a habit, you ought to be prepared to put in the work and be consistent. Remember that building a habit is a process, and it won’t happen overnight. With persistence and patience, you can break old habits and create new ones that serve you better.

bored man at work leaning on his desk and looking at his laptop
It takes a lot of effort to unlearn old habits and adopt new ones.

Comfort and stability

Habits are a natural way for our brains to cope with the unpredictable nature of the world around us. They allow us to develop a sense of control and predictability in order to reduce stress and anxiety. When we repeat a behavior over time, it becomes automatic. This gives us a feeling of stability, knowing what to expect and how to respond. However, when we try to change a habit, it can disrupt this sense of stability, causing individuals to feel uneasy.

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Habits are addictive

Habits can become addictive because they are associated with the release of pleasurable chemicals in the brain, such as dopamine. When individuals engage in a habit repeatedly, their brain starts to associate this behavior with pleasure. It further reinforces it through the release of dopamine, causing a habit loop. This is where the brain becomes addicted to a particular behavior.

calm woman meditating on a beach
While changing habits is hard at first, it becomes easier with time, patience, and effort.

Habits that are associated with negative behaviors can become especially addictive as they provide a form of comfort and release from stress. This turns into a vicious cycle where the individual continues to engage in the habit of feeling good. However, the habit itself becomes a source of stress and discomfort after some time. Breaking the addictive habit loop can be challenging as the brain experiences withdrawal symptoms. This explains the addictive potential of habits and helps us understand why it takes time and effort to stop them.

Social and environmental factors

It’s important to note that habits are often influenced by our social networks. This stems from the natural need to fit in and be accepted by society. For this reason, deviating from established norms and behaviors within the group can be uncomfortable and even discouraging. Furthermore, changing a habit can also mean breaking away from established support systems, such as friends or family members who engage in similar behaviors. Losing this support can feel isolating and create a sense of loss, and that’s why many choose to stay in the comfort zone of old habits.

In order to transform your habits and get unstuck, it’s important to seek out new support systems that align with new goals and habits. This could include finding new friends or joining support groups where you can connect with others who share similar values and objectives. By building a new support system, individuals can create a sense of community and belonging that aligns with their new habits. Most importantly, it’s essential to rediscover your values and learn what habits could bring a positive change to your life.

Forming new habits requires discipline and effort

Forming new habits requires effort, discipline, and consistency. Maintaining new habits can be challenging, especially when old habits and cues are still present. Without discipline, it is easy to fall back into old habits and fail to make lasting changes. Building discipline involves setting clear and specific goals, tracking progress, and holding oneself accountable for actions. Individuals must also overcome challenges and obstacles that arise during the process of forming new habits.

unrecognizable person writing a schedule
Organization and discipline are necessary in order to form new habits.

To form a new habit, individuals must be intentional about their actions and decisions. They must establish routines and stick to them, even when it is inconvenient or difficult. This requires a high level of focus and determination, as individuals must overcome the resistance that comes with change. They must also have a strong motivation to succeed, as this provides the drive and energy needed to continue working toward their goals. Discipline and organization are the keys to forming new habits as they provide structure and stability. It helps individuals to stay on track and remain focused, even when they encounter challenges or distractions. By incorporating discipline into their daily routine, individuals can ensure that they are making progress toward their goals and creating lasting change in their lives.

Resistance to change is another reason why changing habits is hard

Many people resist change, even if it would benefit them, because it requires leaving their comfort zones. Our habits are deeply rooted in our brains, so changing them can feel like a significant drain on our time and energy. It’s easy to fall back into old habits because they are familiar and comfortable, even if they are not good for us. However, change is possible with effort and persistence. By consciously creating new habits and taking small steps outside of our comfort zones, we can gradually shift our brains’ connections and create new patterns that support our growth and well-being.

Lack of self-motivation

When it comes to forming new habits, motivation and dedication are key. Without a strong sense of motivation, you may struggle to stick to your goals. Changing habits is not easy; it takes effort and commitment to make lasting changes. Due to this, it’s easy to become discouraged if progress is slow.

Pink scrabble tiles spelling out the word motivation
Changing habits is hard without strong motivation.

As previously mentioned, one of the biggest hurdles to overcome when changing a habit is resistance to change itself. It’s natural to feel comfortable with what we know and to resist change, but in order to create new habits, individuals must be willing to push through this discomfort. The key to doing so is finding a strong source of motivation. Motivation can come from a variety of sources, including personal goals, social support, or a desire for personal growth. It’s important to find a source of motivation that is personally meaningful and relevant, as this will help you stay committed to your goals. Once you define what motivates you to improve, it’s important to work consistently on all your objectives.

Difficulties due to psychiatric disorders and addictions

For those with mental health disorders, changing habits can be an especially difficult and challenging process. Disorders like depression or anxiety can make it challenging to find the motivation or energy to make changes. On the other hand, addiction disorders can create intense cravings or withdrawal symptoms when trying to break free from drug abuse or associated behavior. These challenges can make the process of change feel overwhelming and even impossible.

Lack of resources or support can discourage people from transforming their habits

One of the most critical components of changing habits is access to relevant information. Having the right knowledge at the right time can make a massive difference. This includes knowing where to find the right resources, such as:

  • support groups
  • training materials
  • expert advice
  • psychological helpĀ 

Without access to relevant information, people may find themselves struggling to get started. Furthermore, following the wrong approach could lead to frustration and eventually giving up on their goals. In addition to information, having a strong support system can make all the difference. The encouragement of family and friends can provide motivation to keep going, even when things get tough. Having someone to talk to when things are not going well can provide a fresh perspective and offer guidance on how to overcome obstacles. This can help individuals stay on track and make progress toward their goals.

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Another critical factor that affects one’s ability to change habits is access to resources. For example, people who want to lose weight may find it challenging to maintain a healthy diet if they live in an area where fresh groceries aren’t readily available. Access to physical activity facilities such as gyms or walking paths is also crucial for individuals who want to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

How does psychotherapy help with habit change?

Psychotherapy can be a powerful tool for supporting individuals in making positive changes to their habits and behavior. By working with a mental health professional, individuals can gain a deeper understanding of the root causes of their habits and behavior patterns and develop new strategies for making lasting changes. Behavioral therapies like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) support habit change by helping individuals to identify and address underlying emotional and psychological issues that may be driving their behavior. That way, individuals can gain greater insight into why they engage in certain behaviors and work towards developing healthier coping mechanisms. It’s important o mention that mental help services have also become available online. That way, you can attend, for example, online CBT treatment without having to leave your home.

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All you have to do is go online and choose among an array of quality mental help services.

In addition, you can also find some of the best online DBT therapy programs that can help you in the long run. Luckily, there are many companies that provide quality, solution-oriented services.

Online psychotherapy offers convenience and anonymity

Online psychotherapy has become increasingly popular due to the many benefits it offers. It provides individuals with a more convenient, accessible, and affordable way to access mental health services. Rather than having to travel to an office, people can connect with their therapist from the comfort of their own homes. This can be especially beneficial for those with busy schedules or those who live in rural areas with limited access to mental health services. Fortunately, there are top online therapy websites available where you can browse various online therapy services.

Since online psychotherapy is also highly accessible, it allows you to connect with therapists from anywhere in the world. This benefits particularly those who may be hesitant to seek mental health services in their local community, as it provides a level of anonymity and privacy. In addition to convenience and accessibility, online psychotherapy is often more affordable than traditional in-person therapy, making it a financially more accessible option for those with limited financial resources. Whether you are looking for the best online therapy for depression and anxiety, rest assured you can find them online at lower rates.

A wide array of online therapy options

The concept of online therapies has evolved throughout the years, and it only gets better. It’s safe to say that online mental health services are almost as quality as live therapy sessions. This has led to the expansion of therapies and the improvement of their quality. Nowadays, mental health experts are able to even recommend the best online therapy for depression and highlight its benefits. Moreover, continuous studies have shown the effectiveness of these therapies for people struggling with different levels of depression disorder. Convenience, anonymity, and affordability allowed individuals struggling with depression to seek help from the comfort and safety of their homes.

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You can attend online therapy from the safety and comfort of your own home.

You can also browse even some of the best online marriage and family therapy programs and choose the option you find more suitable. In short, online therapy has changed the way people approach mental help and has made it accessible more than ever before.

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In conclusion, changing habits is hard at first. However, the results the change brings are long-term, satisfactory, and in service to your newly adopted lifestyle. In case you need additional guidance and resources, our website is at your disposal 24/7. Feel free to contact us atĀ  Consumer Opinion Guide for extra advice on various online mental help services and much more else.

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