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Weekly Wisdom

Topic 35:

BE A MASTER OF HABIT CHANGE!

Why do we “do what we do?” Sometimes that’s an easy one to figure out, and sometimes we are stumped at our behavior! If you’re on the program, physical cravings for sweets and carbs should be minimal, if at all.

“Then why do I still feel like I ‘crave’ some of the foods I used to eat?” The answer, in a word, is HABITS. Habits create neurological “cravings,” but we can change them if we understand how they work. Some cue triggers every habit. At some point, we decided to respond in a certain way to something (the cue) and repeated it just enough times for our brain to chunk the sequence of behaviors together into an automatic response.

Habits save brain energy; they allow the brain to “default” to a chain of familiar actions. Our brains like habits! Ever drive home and not remember most of the journey? Scary, but an excellent example of a habit loop! Cue-routine- reward. At some point, you wanted or needed a particular reward. The interesting thing about habits is that we may no longer need or want the reward, but we still crave it. So the key to habit change is finding a different routine, in response to the cue, that still offers a reward.

Perhaps your cue is triggered by social events, TV time in the evening, or the treat jar on a coworkers desk. No matter what triggers the cue, if you interrupt the current routine enough times, your brain will stop craving and expecting what usually came next in the sequence. It’ll then start craving the new action (like taking a different route through the office or having hot tea in the evening). Understanding what’s going on in our brains allows us to work on positive lifestyle habit change consciously!

And, it’s so encouraging to know that once a new habit is off and running, we no longer need to rely on willpower to resist temptation and new habits ELIMINATE cravings for old temptations.

Did you know?

Research has shown that it takes 31 days of conscious effort to make or break a habit. That means, if one practices something consistently for 31 days, on the 32nd day it does become a habit. -Shiv Khera

Recipe of the Week!

Cinnamon Mochachino

Ingredients:
1 Packet of ShiftSetGo Mocha
Pudding/Shake mix
1 tsp (or to taste) instant coffee
(decaf or regular)
⅛ tsp (or to taste) cocoa powder
Cinnamon to taste
6-8 oz water

Directions:
Pour cold water in a shaker and add all ingredients. Shake well until completely dissolved and enjoy a scrumptious shake! If you have a magic bullet or blender, you can add some ice cubes and make it extra cold and creamy! In the winter, this makes a delicious hot treat!