Many times, bad behavior chains are kicked off because of a trigger event. A trigger event could be when something happens to make you angry or upset, or it could be something that you do routinely, like arriving home at the end of the day. Smelling freshly baked cookies could be a trigger event.
If you can discover what events cause you to perform a bad habit, or a bad behavior chain, you can work on fixing the chain of events. So this is the first step – figuring out what your triggers are. Here are a couple of examples:
- Habit: eating candy at my desk
- Trigger: boss yelling at me
- Strategy: to break the bad behavior chain: take a deep breath. Consider if I actually made a mistake and if so, how could I do better next time. Or is the boss being unreasonably and if so, what actions can I take
- Habit: eating potato chips while sitting on the couch watching TV
- Trigger: sitting on the couch
- Strategy: bring a big glass of ice water to the couch when I watch TV; wash dishes or fold clothes while watching TV; when I feel like I need a break, take a leisurely walk around the yard.
Now it’s your turn.
A trigger can also be for a desired behavior.
5. What could you set up as triggers for these actions?
- Desired Habit: drink more water
- Possible Trigger: set a timer on my phone to remind me to drink water and fill up my glass again