by Brigid Ludwig
Do you have a few bad habits that you wish you could break? Whether you’re just starting out in your career, or you’re a well-established professional, there’s no doubt you have bad habits that affect you at work. Bad habits easily become ingrained in our everyday lives because they are done unconsciously. Becoming aware of them is the first step in combating them. If you want to strive to produce your very best projects, it’s important to examine and address the bad habits that you turn to every day.
There are two main causes of bad habits: stress and boredom. Bad habits arise because we want to feel more in control of our environment and be more entertained. Whether you’re constantly checking your email to stay on top of things or chatting in the break room, it’s likely these bad habits arose from one of those two factors. While there are many ways to address each bad habit, you must also do your best to combat the stress and boredom you experience at work. Ask yourself if you have too much to do or need more structure to your workweek in order to help reduce stress. Consider what you find most enjoyable about your job and find ways to spend more time on that.
The trick to eliminating your bad habits isn’t to try and erase them, but to replace them. It’s much harder to completely stop doing something than it is to find a healthier habit. This is because bad habits are similar in some ways to addictions. In addition to being short-term rewards that cause long-term harm, they arise as solutions to underlying problems. So for each bad habit, you can simply analyze what benefit it offers you, and find a more productive alternative.
An example of how to replace a bad habit is if you struggle with checking your email too often to see what tasks are on your plate, you can replace that with a to-do list you create at the beginning of the day. This addresses the stress you feel about getting everything done but doesn’t take up as much time as checking your email.
You can practice this technique of bad habit replacement with anything from spending too much time on your phone or spending too much on new business expenses. It’s important however that you address your bad habits either one at a time or a few at a time. You shouldn’t try to stop all your bad habits at once because that can cause you to feel frustrated and lose motivation. There is only so much energy you can devote to changing your behavior on a daily basis, and it can be counterproductive to focus all on your negative habits.
There are many areas of your life that can benefit from reducing your bad habits. While they may only happen at work, they can make you miserable and undermotivated, which carries over to your life. When you decrease your stress and boost your productivity, you’ll feel happier and more energized throughout the day. In addition, reducing your overall stress can have a major positive impact on your health.
To help you combat your bad habits, Fundera created this infographic that details the 9 bad habits that make you unproductive, miserable, and unprofessional. Check it out below to learn what they are and how to fix them.
Do you have any bad work habits that you’re hoping to break?
Photo: Marten Bjork (Unsplash)