Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Candy Drawer

If you missed my good news, click HERE.

If you missed my crude video, click HERE.

There may be something wrong with me, but every time I watch the video I laugh out loud at the fart sound (:56 into the video if you must know). Is this normal? I even still laugh out loud at my own fart sounds when I make them. Or, anyone else’s. It is even funnier if I don’t know them personally.

Say, for example, you are in the grocery store. The guy beside you is perusing the spaghetti sauces. He makes a snap decision to go with the Ragu, which is on the top shelf. He leans forward, reaches up, and WHAM, an unsuspecting fart escapes. This kind of an episode would make my day, my week. God help me if my kids were along. We would re-enact that episode for hours. “And then he leaned up and pftttttfpffft (insert fart sound)!!”

Moving on. Today I’d like to talk about a nasty subject. Believe it or not, it has nothing to do with bodily functions.

I’d like to talk HABITS. The word “habit” doesn’t always conjure up positive actions like, “I am in the habit of eating four servings of vegetables a day.” No, the word habit has kind of a negative connotation. As in, “I have this annoying habit of chewing on my hair.” Or, “I have a Coors Light habit I just can’t kick!”

Don’t be fooled. Habits and addictions are not that  far apart. Both are dependencies, yet they are on opposite ends of the spectrum. A habit seems benign, manageable. But, over time, it can take on a life of its own and become extremely difficult to break (addiction).

“The habit or an addiction is a human trait that is difficult to break, it is something that you are used to doing, something that satisfies a part of you, that you have developed because at the time you gained benefit from it, but over time the benefit may have been lost but the trait continues.” {source}

Yes, it is so true. We develop habits because they benefit us in some way. Chew your nails? You might be nervous or hungry. Sleeping with makeup on?  You’re tired to bother at night. Crunching ice? Just plain satisfying. Sleeping around? Just plain satisfying.

What I find fascinating, is that when one habit is stopped, it is replaced by another. Think of the quintessential A.A. meeting. No alcohol or drugs, but cigarettes and coffee out the ass.

In an effort to cut down on drinking wine during the week, I have discovered, to my horror, that my nightstand drawer looks like this:

P1080663

Yes, I have replaced wine with candy. Don’t ask why I have a stuffed dog in there. The ibuprofen is self explanatory. That much candy or wine is going to give you a headache.

Having a glass of wine at night has become a habit to relieve stress. I’ve decided I don’t need to be drinking during the week. Changing this habit will cut down on costs, make me sleep better and make my weekend glass or two of wine that much more satisfying. That’s what I tell myself.

This replacement technique is actually suggested by therapists. Usually the goal is to substitute a behavior that is better than the one you had before. Like instead of yelling at the kids to relieve tension, you go for a run or flip off a stranger while driving. Is candy better than wine? Jury’s out on that one.

Other remedies for breaking “bad'” habits:

Beat Yourself Up – “You stupid girl! How can you keep doing this? You’ll never change!” Just kidding. Don’t do that.

Investigate - Figure out what benefit you get from the habit, just so you know why you do it. This may or may not help or make you feel better.

Give it Time– It takes at least 21 days to break a habit or to develop a new one. 21 freaking days. That’s a long time to not do something you really like to do.

Write it Down – Don’t leave commitments in your brain. Write them on paper. This does two things. First, it creates clarity by defining in specific terms what your change means. Second, it keeps you committed since it is easy to dismiss a thought, but harder to dismiss a promise printed in front of you. Unless you set fire to the paper or use it as TP, then it’s pretty easy to dismiss.

Tell–  Make a public commitment to everyone you know that you’re going to stick with it. Offer yourself a reward if you make it a month. Anything to give yourself that extra push. That way people can ridicule you if you don’t succeed. Hell, you can ridicule yourself.

Keep it Simple – Your change should involve one or two rules, not a dozen. Exercising once per day for at least thirty minutes is easier to follow than exercising Monday, every other Wednesday, Tuesdays when it’s snowing, alternating mountain biking with hot yoga then adding in swimming some laps but only if you can’t run in the deep end because the pussy posse is there. Simple rules create habits, complex rules create headaches.

What’s your nasty habit? Is it staying or going? How will you stop?

Heading for the nightstand drawer,

SUAR

PS: Tomorrow I can run for eight minutes! Injury be damned!!

52 comments:

  1. so i missed the good news post so i'll say it here: CONGRATS. you are totally a hero of mine now :) and woooooooooooooooot for 8 minutes tmrw. i don't think i have many "bad habits" i mean, i eat ice cream every night and reeces pb cups but nothing excessive. although drinking and dancing is happening more than sleeping and working lately ;) maybe that's a bad habit..but it feels so good!

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  2. So funny--I just shot you an email about the fact that I saw you in their email ad today. So very, very cool! You will be a great addition to their lineup.

    Habits. I'm of the beat myself up kind, no doubt. As to trading one for another, it's so true. Have you heard of Back on My Feet? Awesome program and I think the habit swap is what makes it work.

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  3. Reading youor blog....staying...unstoppable!!!!

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  4. Interesting, and truthful. Loved this post, also funny too.

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  5. good post. Candy is my nemisis. I caved yesterday and ate some fruit slices. You know the ones with the sugar on the outside....I felt like dookey afterwards.
    I also take benedryl everynight to help me sleep. That one needs to go too....as soon as this bottle is gone :)

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  6. Just because you are giving up week night wine, doesn't mean I have to. Right?? I started drinking it to stop my evening candy habit.

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  7. My on the wine/candy issue came back a long time ago. Wine all the way! Coffee now, I'm trying to cut back on. Mostly it was a couple cups, maybe 3 at most a day. This last week or so it's got right out of hand. I will need to be firm. One cup per day, and no cheating with cup size.

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  8. Candy is my addiction for sure. I quit smoking, no problem.

    But sugary morsels of doom? NOPE. Not on your life. I guess I only have willpower for certain things.

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  9. RUNNING TOMORROW!!! I am so excited for you! You are such an amazing example of how to deal with injury!!
    Loved the part about beating yourself up about it ha! K, I have never had wine but as you know I down candy every day. Love the ibuprofen ha! My nasty habit is probably the fact that I am always chewing gum. I love gum so much but I don't think I am going to get rid of that addiction for a while...I love it to much. Good luck tomorrow and I can't wait to read it!

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  10. 8 minutes of running! I'm so happy for you! Good luck, hope it goes great! Twizzlers are my weakness, but my habit is probably everynight I have a little bag of cookies and some hot tea. Those little low cal cookies turned into 2-4 milanos during the holiday's, but I'm back on track now, I hope! :)

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  11. Beth, super happy for you to be able to start running tomorrow, 8 minutes or BUST! (But please be careful out there, today it was super slippery is spots!)

    Chocolate calls my name all the time... and I listen all too often. Hence the running.

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  12. We all have habits and substitution is a great way to get rid of them. And, suddenly that candy drawer explains my own cookie habit (and, by the way, I don't drink any alcohol - at all, not in eons).
    Enjoy tomorrow. Eight minutes of heaven.

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  13. My habit involves eating. I am eating every 3 hours and have this idea that if I don't I'm missing out on something. It is weird b/c it is the propoer way to eat but sometimes I feel like I'm doing it just to do it and for no other reason.

    And tomorrow is kick-off day for you isn't it? 8 minutes to Boston. You can do it and it will be great. Enjoy those 8 minutes....more than my wife can say....ba-dum dum.

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  14. I love the ides of flipping off a stranger to relieve tension... and if done while running that would be twice the relief!

    Hooray for tomorrow, hope your 8 minutes are wonderful!

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  15. There is a problem with the drawer...I don't see any chocolate! Nothing wrong with a little candy, really, particularly for someone active like you!

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  16. Good luck with your 8 minute run - I'm so excited for you!! And congrats on your good news :)
    I break my habits into 2 categories: habits that annoy others (nail biting, flipping the pages of books while I read) and habits that annoy me (spending 10 bucks a day on my starbucks habit - okay, addiction, bein on a really irregular sleep and workout schedule for no-good reason other than enjoying the interwebs a lot). I'm working on the latter - not so much the former.

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  17. We have a candy drawer in the house too but I try to stay away from it.

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  18. is it bad that as soon as i saw your drawer i made a run to 7-11 for mike and ike's?

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  19. Got the Athleta email in my inbox today with your smiling face! So cool!!

    My nasty habit is diet drinks - sadly, i think it's a habit i will never be able to kick!

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  20. I am so stoked for your 8 minutes of running.

    Love the candy drawer, but where the hell is the chocolate??

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  21. My worst habit is probably diet coke. I traded in cigarettes for diet coke about five years ago, and I stand by my decision. I'm down to four or five a week, which to me is totally manageable, so it's not going anywhere any time soon.

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  22. I remember when I first starting following you, like a year and a half ago?? and you said you were addicted to Dots. I keep trying that Dot diet but I'm not having similar results on the body as you. Darnit!

    GOOD LUCK with the 8 minutes, I'll be here (hopfully snowbound and not able to go to school tomorrow!?!?!?) thinking about you!!!!

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  23. I know, weird!! I am not a chocolate girl. I prefer the gummy fruity candy crap. The stuff that is really hard to digest.

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  24. Rose - if I had to choose a vice, I'd go with Diet Coke over smoking any day. Diet Coke probably won't kill you (as fast).

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  25. I hate the gummy fruit crap and would go for chocolate peanut butter anyday. Dove promises, hershey's bliss...yummm!

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  26. I had no bad habits until very recently. In the last 69 hours I have developed a nasty habit of watching your video. Actually I think that it has pushed over the edge into addiction. So even though I am not very fast at running, I am super speedy at habit/addiction acquisition. Go, me.

    Busted out laughing about flipping off a stranger while driving to relieve tension. And giggling like crazy about the fart re-enactment... we do that too.

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  27. Nice, hefty pile of candy there! Mmm, chewy fruit candy. Yeah I definitely have a weird habit: 9 out of 10 times when I wake up in the middle of the night (which is pretty much every night), I get up and grab a bag of fruit snacks to chow down on. Night snacking is my habit. I'm such a weirdo.

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  28. PS good luck on the 8 minutes tomorrow!!! *fingers crossed for no pain!*

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  29. I think I will keep my glass of wine every evening. Red wine is suppose to be heart healthy right??? I am trying to stop drinking my diet coke with lime that I get every weekday after lunch. Does replacing it with Diet cherry coke count.. lol Didn't think so.. I'm down to 2 a week. That progress! Have a good 8 minutes tmrw :)

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  30. Funny enough (to you and me, perhaps), I have a habit of farting. For sport, and accolades.

    I also have a serious addiction to Coca Cola (not even diet!). And jalapeno potato chips. But mostly coke. and farts.

    This could, perhaps, be a major reason for my social awkwardness.

    Enjoy your 8!

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  31. swearing.

    drinking pop (soda).

    no idea.

    help.

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  32. OMG - we have the same candy habits. Cannot get enough of Hot Tamales. They're my absolute fave, and I cannot do chocolate. Yeah, I know. Female who doesn't like chocolate... However, did you ever notice that the yellow Dots taste like Lemon Pledge? (Not that I've eaten pledge, but trust me...)

    Congrats again!

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  33. I usually have a glass of wine everynight. I enjoy it while cooking. Hmmm, I guess I could try to let that go. But I don't wanna!
    If you do, i'll do it.
    :)
    LC

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  34. So great you got in your 8 minutes!!! woo-hoo!!

    Wine and chocolate are my two bad habits. I suppose I should eliminate them, but truth be told, the running helps keep their damage lessened to a degree. (I might have to start increasing mileage though the older I get. I'm approaching 40 and I suspect the little bit of weight around the middle is not going to get any smaller at this rate).

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  35. Impressive candy spread! (I know I'm not supposed to encourage the behavior, but impressive nonetheless!)

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  36. Not going to talk habits. Rather, I'll tell you about the guy who farted in the gym. This guy comes into the pilates/stretching section where there's maybe 7 reasonably attractive women and him. He sits down on a mat with a medicine ball and proceeds to grunt out an ab workout. He thinks he is VERY cool. He is showing off for the ladies. Until he grunts out a loud FFFTTT! Well, it was more of a honking sound. No one said anything. He calmly finished 1 more rep, got up and left. Hilarious.

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  37. Ibuprophen just made it to my snack drawer, now what?

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  38. I have read several studies that claim a single glass of wine a day is good for you. I have not seen nor heard of any studies promoting the virtues of Mike & Ike, Dots, or Jujyfruits..

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  39. I have a candy/sweets habit too and have cut back since last week. I had withdrawal headaches! Thanks for the techniques. I needed this. Small steps, one thing at a time...

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  40. First, congratulations on the news. Secondly; it is a known dietary principle that M&M's are interchangeable with red wine on the Woman's Food Pyramid.

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  41. Jamoosh - yeah I've read the same. But sometimes one glass becomes too and I'd rather just get out of the nightly habit.

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  42. Funny! I have a "vitamin I" (ibuprofen) addiction, too... Oh, wait, you were talking about the candy...

    Candy is harder to give up than smoking, harder to give up than booze (I know. I am still barely not smoking). Just ask my dentist (who has quoted me almost 6 grand to finish fixing up my teeth this year... after insurance).

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  43. Jillian and RUNNING!!! Seriously, I am so excited for you today to run. I thought about it this morning as I was getting ready because I know you are so passionate and so talented when it comes to running and YOU ARE BACK IN ACTION. Can't wait for the recap.

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  44. You couldn't pay me to say what's in my nightstand.

    I once decided I was only going to eat food I prepared myself. That turned out to mean that I can make some fantastic candy.

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  45. Hehe!! Laughing through your post again! It's becoming the highlight of my day, so thank you.
    Hoping that everything is healing for you and you're well on your way to a full recovery :)

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  46. Just read your blog after reading about you in my Athleta email- congrats! Thanks for the blog- you had me cracking up. I took up running a few years back after moving to Colorado & love it. Did the Denver Rock & Roll half marathon last October & may try the marathon this year. Thanks for the inspiration.

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  47. "Crunching ice? Just plain satisfying." I'd always heard it was guilt over masturbation. Wrong all these years.

    Kick butt in those 8 minutes ( if your leg can bend that much)!

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  48. I like "keep it simple" ... have you ever noticed that when Kovas starts an idea on a Monday he'll carry it through all week!

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  49. Sometimes with an addiction, it's the routine or ritual that relaxes you. Maybe instead of candy you could make a cup of hot cocoa or tea and drink that instead?

    Candy doesn't do it for me nearly as much as cookies. I have a candy cupboard I rarely visit, but cookies don't stand a chance in my house.

    And gratz and gratz! Just read today's post. It gets better. Your muscles just have to remember how it works on dry land.

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  50. Sugar is my habit/addicition of choice. And trimming my split ends. I hate split ends! I keep scissors in my purse to trim them at all times.

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  51. We live in a fart funny household too. It's great to laugh whenever you can at whatever you can!

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  52. My personal trainer that I just found on http://www.jobquotes.com/ is all about finding out if I have a candy spot or not... I'm not quite ready to give up the good stuff just yet.

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