If you have a bad habit or an addiction in your life, chances are you aren’t practicing the behavior alone. The saying, “birds of a feather flock together”, resonates when it comes to people meeting up or practicing negative behaviors together. Whether it’s smokers congregating outside in a haze, drinking buddies toasting, shopping partners over spending or food friends overeating, social aspects can reinforce the need to act out the addictive behavior. Many smokers when seeing other people smoke are more likely to smoke themselves. Many bad habits are also practiced in social situations. Identifying the social connection as part of the underlying reason for the addiction can be an instrumental strategy to quitting.
Here are a few tips to help you quit a behavior by cutting back on social settings or people that may trigger use:
- Frequent new locations. Cut back on social settings in which your habit is often used. Just as drinkers obviously should avoid bars.
- Develop new friendships and social networks with people who are supportive and understanding of your needs and who encourage you to keep going rather than urge you to give in and give up.
- Develop fun hobbies. Spending time doing things you enjoy will lead you to social connections with people who share the same healthy habits.
“Friends are as companions on a journey, who ought to aid each other to persevere in the road to a happier life.” Pythagoras