The Complete Idiot's Guide to Breaking Bad Habits

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Overview

There are currently 130 million caffeine abusers in America today, not to mention the multi-millions of choking smokers, perpetual dieters, procrastinators, nailbiters, knuckle crackers, and tooth grinders. This idiot-proof book offers serious, helpful advice for anyone who has struggled to kick an annoying, chronic habit, and presents all the available remedies in an objective, easy-to-follow style. Buying this book is the first step anyone should take in reversing the ...

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Overview

There are currently 130 million caffeine abusers in America today, not to mention the multi-millions of choking smokers, perpetual dieters, procrastinators, nailbiters, knuckle crackers, and tooth grinders. This idiot-proof book offers serious, helpful advice for anyone who has struggled to kick an annoying, chronic habit, and presents all the available remedies in an objective, easy-to-follow style. Buying this book is the first step anyone should take in reversing the seemingly impossible habit.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780028621104
  • Publisher: Macmillan Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 12/10/1997
  • Series: Complete Idiot's Guide Series
  • Pages: 293
  • Product dimensions: 7.39 (w) x 9.12 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Table of Contents

I. OVER AND OVER AGAIN.

1. What Is a Bad Habit?
Understanding the Habit: Good and Bad. When a Habit Turns Bad.
Pick a Habit, Any Habit. Top Ten Bad Habits. But You Love Your Daily Rituals.
Is Your Life Interfering with Your Habit?
It's Not Me, It's My Life. Self-Test Challenge: What's Your Lifestyle? Part. Part. Part. Part. Answer Key.
Or, Is Your Habit Interfering with Your Life?
Separating the Good from the Bad. Walking the Fine Line. Courage to Change.

2. Why You Do the Things You.
Slowly but Surely, the Habit Formed. The Devil Made Me Do. The Pleasure Principle. Practice Makes Perfect. When You Can't Give It. Will the Real You Please Stand Up?

3. But I Like It Like That.
Go Figure. What Kind of Idiot Are You?
Constant Cravings. Tempting Tendencies. Compelling Compulsions.
Striving for Balance. New Year's Resolutions.

II. JUST SAY NO!

4. Okay, So How Do You Stop?
Rome Wasn't Built in a Day. Learning to Live with or Without It: The Biology of Habit. The Scarlett O'Hara Syndrome or “I'll Think About It Tomorrow” . Facing Your Fears. Erasing the Tape. Writing It Down. Take One Step Forward.

5. Step 1: Identify the Behavior.
Who, Where, When, Why, How?
Uprooting Your Bad Habit(s). Reruns with a New Cast.
Be Your Own Bad HabitDetective.
Your Daily Habit Log. Read It and Weep.
Mirror, Mirror on the Wall.

6. Step 2: Evaluate Risks and Benefits.
So What's Stopping You? What's Good About Your Bad Habit?
In the Short Term. In the Long Run.
What's Baaaad About Your Bad Habit?
In the Short Term. For the Long Run.
What's the Worst That Could Happen? What's the Best That Could Happen?

7. Step 3: Prepare for Change.
Holding On to That Last Cigarette. Accentuate the Positive, Eliminate the Negative.
Creating a Conducive Environment. Paving the Emotional Way.
With a Little Help from Your Friends. Feeding Your Brain, Starving Your Bad Habit. Picturing the New You. Free, Free at Last!

8. Step 4: Just Do It!
And You're Off! Baby Steps, Always Baby Steps. Getting Through It While You Do.
Finding a New Release. Say a Little Prayer. Rewards, Not Punishments.
“I Don't Recognize You Without Your Bad Habit” .

9. Get Back on That Horse.
Like a Wave Crashing on the Shore. Relapse Traps: Which One Did You Fall Into? Calling Back the Troops. Purge the Urge. Staying the Course.

III. RESIST THOSE CRAVINGS.

10. Identifying Your Cravings.
The Nature of a Craving. When You've Just Got to Have It.
Is It All in Your Head? Or Is It a Chemical Thing?
When Willpower Is Not Enough. Up on the High Wire.

11. Easing Up on Alcohol.
Drinking: An American Pastime. Alcohol and the Body 101. To Drink or Not To Drink, That Is the Question. When Is Drinking a Problem?
Too Much at the Holiday Party Again. Drinking Alone. Binge Drinking: A Dangerous Trend. Hung Over and Hating It.
Sober Is Better.
Choosing Not to Drink. Learning Moderation.

12. Put That Cigarette Out!
Why, Oh Why, Is Quitting Smoking So Hard?
Nicotine: Is It Addictive? The Very Feel of It.
What Smoking Does to Your Body.
Smoking Stats and Your Health. The Good News About Quitting.
“Sure I Can Quit Smoking; I Do It All the Time” . Smoking as a Chronic Disease: Treatment Is Available.
Hair of the Dog, Smoking-Wise. A Way to Even Out.
Take a Deep Breath.

13. Calming the Caffeine Jitters.
Running on Empty: When Only a Jolt Will Do. Caffeine and Your Body: Welcome to Central Perk. How Less Caffeine Equals More Energy. Caffeine Here, There, Everywhere.
Get That Mo-Jo Working. “Don't Tell Me to Drink Tea£” . Bring on the Bubbly. How Sweet It Is. Water? Caffeinated Water? Taking What's Good for You.
Just One Cup Won't Hurt, Will It? The Zen of a Stress-Free Body and Mind.

14. Food, Not-So-Glorious Food.
You Gotta Eat, Don't You?
The ABCs of Nutrition.
When the Refrigerator Wins.
When You Just Gotta Have It. When You're Starving.
When Too Much Is Never Enough.
Reality Log: You Are What You Eat.
The Last Ten (or Thirty) Pounds.
The Fat-Free Trap. Pills and Supplements.
“You Mean I Have to Exercise?”
Exercise and Your Body. What Kind of Shape Are You In? Working Out.
The Refrigerator, Unchained.
Balance. Structure. Satisfaction.

IV. STOP DRIVING ME (AND EVERYONE ELSE) CRAZY!

15. Tame Those Tendencies.
“Me? I Don't Have Tendencies.” When the Rest of the World Has the Real Problem. Looking Inward: A Self-Test Challenge. You Can't Change Your Relationships Until You Change Yourself.

16. Be Straightforward.
Little White Lies and Big Whoppers.
Deceptions and Subterfuges. The Grand Gesture. Make It Go Away. Catching Yourself in the Act. Keeping Track of the Truth.
Forgetting About It. Losing Your Cool. What We Have Here Is a Failure to Communicate.
Overcoming Stress. Your Itchy Trigger Finger. Talking About It.

17. Starting Right Now.
When You Can't Get There on Time. Yes, You! A Procrastination Self-Test. What's Stopping You.
Fear of Failure. Fear of Success. Feeling Overwhelmed. Time Management Missteps. Plain Old Laziness.
Stop Procrastinating!
Breaking Big Tasks into Little Ones. Making Lists. Rewarding Yourself. The Motivation Factor.
Tomorrow Is Another Day.

18. Establishing Emotional Integrity.
Did I Do That? The Top Ten Things You Need from People in Your Life. The Fine Art of Sharing. All in the Family.
“But They Still Treat Me Like I'm Twelve!” Transforming Family Relationships.
Love, Ah, Love£.
Inability to Commit. Pushing It. Sex: Feast or Famine?
People in General.
Stalkers Anonymous. The Guru Syndrome. Knowing Who's Good for You.

V. CALMING THOSE COMPULSIONS.

19. Identify Your Compulsions.
When You Just, Just, Just Can't Help It.
A Compelling Self-Test You Won't Be Able to Resist. One More Time. Your First Time, Redux.
A Hard Look at Your Compulsion. Learning to Stop.
Physical Substitutes. Positive Reinforcement. Meditation.
Channeling Your Energy in a New Direction.

20. Your Very Personal, Personal Space.
A Close Call. Those Quirks Really Are Annoying.
“It Wasn't Me” : Owning Your Farts. “I Gotta Be Me” : A Matter of Public Expression.
Head-to-Toe Habits.
Hair Twirling, Nose Picking, Teeth Grinding/Clenching, Gum Snapping, Knuckle Cracking, Nail Biting, Knee Shaking, Toe Tapping, Belching, Farting, and All Those Other Things You Do. Stop It! Right Now! You Can't Be Too Clean.
Can't We All Just Get Along?

21. Taming the Organizational Devil.
You Are What You Own. Everything in Its Place.
Too Much Order. What's Really Out of Place. Finding Your Inner Slob and Loving It!
The Chaos Theory£at Home.
Damaging Disorder. The Terrors of Tossing. Creating Order in the Home.
The Chaos Theory at the Office. Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle.

22. Finally, Fiscal Fidelity.
Your Money Style.
Spending Too Much? Financial Records in Disarray? Tax Nightmares? Experiencing Budget Phobia?
The Thrill of a Gamble.
From the Casino to the Stock Market. “I Know When to Stop£” . Playing It Safe.
Ralph Kramdenitis: Another Get-Rich-Quick Scheme. Putting Your Financial House in Order.

23. Loving an Electronic High.
Tuning In, Tuning Out. The Boob Tube Personified. What a Tangled Web You Weave.
The Pretender: Anonymous Chatting Personified. The Lover: Online Relationships. The Media Awed: Endless Surfing. The Gamester: Playing It Unsafe.
Here a Phone, There a Pager. Breaking Free from the Airwaves.

VI. BAD HABITS AND THE BIG PICTURE.

24. When Someone You Love Has a Bad Habit.
Should Love Be Blind? Denial Is More Than Just a River in Egypt: Identifying Your Coping. Skills. Codependence: In the Bad Habit Together. Stepping In, Gingerly. Moving Forward Together.

25. Kids Do the Darndest Things.
It's a Family Affair.
Communication, Communication, Communication. The Family Meeting.
Discipline Is Not a Dirty Word.
Presenting Alternatives and Consequences. The Fine Art of Follow Through.
Calming Constant Cravings.
Avoiding Mealtime Hassles. Establishing Healthful Consumption Habits.
Avoiding Annoying Tendencies.
Stubbornness. No Such Thing as a White Lie. Pouting, Complaining, and Fighting.
Cornering Those Compulsions.
Nail-Biting, Hair-Twirling, and Other Personal “Issues” . Chores, Chores, Chores. The Mighty Lure of TVs and Computers.
And So It Begins.

26. Sit, Stay, Behave!
Git Along, Little Doggie.
Dog Basic Training. The Top Ten Doggie Bad Habits.
Here, Kitty, Kitty, Kitty.
Cat Basic Training. Top Ten Bad Cat Habits and What to Do.
Living Happily and Habit-Free with Your Pet.

27. Knowing When You Need More Help.
The Fine Line Revisited. To Be in Therapy or Not To Be in Therapy: When a Therapist Can Help. Choosing the Right Kind of Therapy for You.
Finding a Therapist and Dealing with Insurance. How Therapy Can Help You Break Your Bad Habit. Just What the Doctor Ordered.
Twelve Steps and Beyond. Finding the Courage Within You.

28. Changing the World.
Congratulations! Bad Habit Time Bombs. Creating Change: One Habit at a Time. The Urge to Proselytize. Good Community Habits.

VII. APPENDIXES.

Appendix A: More Bad Habit Busters.
Appendix B: Glossary.
Index.
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