Isn’t it amazing how difficult it can be for any of us to change a bad habit or behavior? It can be a habit that is very simple such as losing your temper behind the wheel of a car or a more challenging one such as trying to break a serious addiction to say, smoking or over eating. Which ever it may be, it’s important for you to know that you’re not alone.

One reason why change can be so difficult is because we have engaged in the habit or behavior for so long, it has become second nature. It’s almost like we’re on “automatic pilot.” As a result, we just engage in the behavior without thinking that we have a choice to do something different in the moment. We forget that we’re blessed with a free will to choose.

Based on the research that’s been conducted over the last twenty years on the brain, we now know much more about how the brain works. The benefit to this information is that we can begin to understand why we often do the things we do in regard to behavior and actions in our lives.

Various studies have shown that our conscious mind is only responsible for 2 - 4% of our thought patterns and behavior. This is why when we use will power and persistence to over come a bad habit or change a behavior, we usually have sub-par results. Short term the action or result may change but if we want to realize lasting change in our life, we must start at the beginning of the cycle, which is thought and behavior.

Recent brain research has shown that the subconscious or implicit memory system is responsible for up to 96% of our thought patterns and behavior. Based on the mechanics of the mind, if we really want to illicit change in our life, this is where we need to focus. As these studies are fairly new, just learning how to change our approach to habit and behavior is a re-learning experience in itself.

We begin to develop brain connections at a very early age, say five years old or so. When we develop brain connections, we are also creating what is referred to as cellular connections. Over time and repetition, the brain and cellular connections actually leave a foot print on our neural network in the brain. They become fixed in our subconscious and wha-la, we have developed a habit or behavioral pattern.

All success and happiness begins with your thoughts based on where you think you want to be in life. Your present circumstances will always control your thoughts and behavior based on your perception of reality, unless you’re consciously aware of you’re behavior. Studies indicate that all results are effects or a function of what we’re thinking, feeling or doing based on our past.

So, what can we do to change our thought patterns and behavior? To change your thought patterns and behavior, you first need to recondition the thought patterns of your past. This is the key to realizing long lasting change. Because thought impacts emotions, what you end up feeling loops back to what you’re thinking. As a result, you continue to repeat the behavior or action, which is why you end up with the same results based on your present circumstances.

It’s a vicious circle but it doesn’t always feel like one because we’ve become comfortable with the behavior. Over time we actually begin to accept that it’s who we are. Believe it or not, we can experience joy from a negative or painful behavior based on our personal association with the behavior. If the behavior feels familiar, we become comfortable with it, so we think it’s good for us. We feel secure and in control because it’s a familiar emotion.

Your subconscious, which represents your interpretation of past events, is responsible for your perceptions, feelings and behavior in the present. I refer to these as The Big 3. To change the Big 3, we must change our self-image, habits and beliefs, The New 3. This is where you ReTrain the Brain

Essentially, what you need to do is create a release program in your brain, which will allow you to recreate your self-image. To create a new self-image, we first need to create new patterns of thought and behavior. This can be achieved by experiencing new affirmations, as well as visualization or meditation. These new affirmations and visualizations need to be created with emotion. They need to become more real than your present circumstances in order for the new affirmations to over ride or recondition your thought patterns and behavior.

Daily repetition first thing in the morning upon rising and most importantly, lastly before you retire are key. Initially, this will require discipline on your part but the rewards are life changing. If you change the inside, your behavior, you’ll begin to change the outside, your results. If you’re willing to pay the price now i.e. discipline, you won’t pay the price of regret later in your life.

Look for my new workshop entitled “ReTrain the Brain Success Workshop.

Remember, if you change your habits, you can change your life

Author's Bio: 

Larry Agresto is a Life & Business Coach and the founder of Peak Performance Coaching. He is also a writer, author and speaker. His work and writings focus on “breakthrough changes” in life and business. His latest work “The Power of Magical Thinking,” is about empowering people to realize their “true potential,” enabling them to live a life of success and happiness.

In your work with Larry, you’ll learn to leave behind the self-limiting beliefs of your past experiences that hold you back. In doing so, you will begin to experience the unlimited thinking of your true potential, which in turn empowers the opportunity for unlimited possibilities into your life and business.

He has written several e-books; “The Principles of Success, The Journey, What’s Stopping You, The Bulls Eye Business Plan and The 21 Day Breakthrough.” His latest e-book is entitled “The Power of Magical Thinking.”

Larry spent 25 years in Corporate America, the last 13 in senior management. He transitioned into a Life & Business Coach after he lost his wife and suddenly became a single parent in May of 1995. He has a BA from Bentley College in Business/Government and an AA in Psychology/Education.

Think Magic

Larry Agresto
Life & Business Coach
Peak Performance Coaching
(978) 649-1020