When we have a conversation about our personal habits the most of the time we don’t even know what happens in our brain or our body for that habit to be created and how that specific thing that we do in our daily basis became a habit one day .
When we do something repeatedly it is a habit. A habit can be a routine or not, what’s the difference between those two?
A habit can be something that works for us in an specific situation and that becomes a routine that can be a healthy or unhealthy routine. Also it can be something that we do when we get triggered and it has an emotional attachment for us, usually unhealthy.
Either way we want to be aware if the habit serves us in a healthy way or unhealthy way.
A good example of a healthy habit/routine is to get 8 hours of sleep at night. We created a routine because that serves us by providing more hours of rest and makes us feel better the next day.
We create habits of everything and often are unhealthy such as having one or two glasses of wine before dinner every night because we need it to unwind. This habit doesn’t serve you in anyway but in your mind it becomes natural and you do it without even thinking.
For that to happen in both cases a wire was created in your brain one day and got reinforced by repeating the same thing daily for a period of time and that created a habit, healthy or unhealthy.
Provably you have heard the word “wire” when talking about habits, if not here it comes a simple explanation that will clarify that for you.
A wire gets created in our brain with a series of small decisions (thoughts) that we make in a very short period of time to take an action. For that action to happen our brain uses a very specific neuron called neurotransmitter and we need a whole bunch of them for that action to become real.
To change an unhealthy habit we need to create a new wire that tells us otherwise and reinforce daily to become the new wire until the old one fates away and the new routine becomes natural for us, a no brainer.