This article originally appeared on Kath Eats Real Food. Kath is a Registered Dietitian and bakery shop…
Does the word habit scare and bore you? Are freedom and spontaneity what you want? Read about how habits actually build freedom.
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Does the idea of building habit and routine sound dull and lifeless? You might be thinking “I want to keep the fun and spontaneity in life! Don’t tie me down with habits!”
The truth is that habits actually build freedom!
I want to present you with the analogy of attachment theory in children. Attachment Theory explores how the bond children form with their parents effects their development into adulthood. In a good emotional bond, children feel loved, nurtured, and like they can fully trust the parent. With a good attachment, children feel confident to leave the nest for short periods of time and go explore… confident they can return at any time to the security of their parent.
However, for children who don’t have that base of security… they always feel scattered and afraid. They can’t go off and explore because they don’t know if where they’re going is going to be better or worse and they don’t have a home base they can trust will be there if things don’t turn out well.
It’s the same with habits. They build that foundation of security. You can relax knowing you have your habits in place. Then when life affords the opportunity for exploration, for adventure, for spontaneity, you can confidently “off road” a bit, trusting that you can return to your habits shortly.
To put it another way, you can rest easy following your habits 95% of the time and still leave room for 5% spontaneity. If your life is 100% spontaneous, that negates the definition of spontaneity… that’s just chaos!
Spontaneity 100% of the time is just chaos in disguise.
I just googled the definition of spontaneity and the contextual sentence given was “”she occasionally tore up her usual schedule in favour of spontaneity”
Spontaneity, by definition, is an occasional situation!
Here’s an example when it comes to eating habits. As a habit I eat a low sugar, high protein, high fibre breakfast each morning. Recently we were visiting friends in Europe over my birthday. In their family they have a tradition of eating cheesecake for breakfast. So they made one for me! I felt very honoured to be included in this tradition and while it didn’t fit the definition of my usual breakfast, I was fine to enjoy it as a spontaneous break from my habit. I was relaxed because I knew I could return to my eating habits the next day.
As a summary:
There’s a chain of events that happens:
- Habits lead to security
- Security leads to exploration
- Exploration leads to fun and excitement!
What do you think about all this? Can you see how habit, routine, and daily ritual can actually lead to freedom, spontaneity and exploration?
If this article speaks to you in regard to your nutrition and food journey and you’d like to take the next step, take this quiz! It will identify what area of healthy eating might be missing from your life! At the end of the quiz, I’ll give you a free resource based on your results that will help you move into a healthier life!