One of Merriam Webster’s many definitions for “habit” is “an acquired mode of behavior that has become nearly or completely involuntary.”
We’re all guilty of some bad habits, and once we recognize and admit them we can address them. Recognizing bad habits in relationships when we allowed them to develop over long periods of time isn’t always easy.
Maybe we excused the beginnings of dismissive or disrespectful behavior because it came from an important person in our inner circle and we wanted to preserve the relationship, or it began during a difficult time and we didn’t want to add to the stress. Whatever the reason, in retrospect we can see how we allowed this diminishment to ooze into our environment a little at a time, a bit like a headache that starts slowly, inching its way into our energy, our vision, our mood. We learned to live with it, until one day we realized we were existing or working in an unhealthy environment. It had become a habit.
Habits cannot be broken; they can only be replaced. And because we are grounded in the endless creativity of the Universe, we are part of its self-organizing and self-correcting Intention: we can replace our unhealthy habits with healthy ones.
This replacement begins with recognition rooted in self-respect, self-power, and self-actualization. It continues with clear definition, communication and anticipation. Our tone of voice, body language and choice of words practiced with sensitivity and respect can model – with Intent – the “mode of behavior” we require from ourselves and others.
Expecting kindness, honor and reverence in our relationships and environment can become a habit too.