Change a Routine to Break a Habit

Altering routines involves deliberately breaking habits. As you break a habit, you open yourself to new behavior, new ways of looking at the world. New experience provides new knowledge. To help loosen perception, try these exercises.

1. Do something just for the heck of it. Move all the living room furniture to the middle of the room and leave it there for a few days. Rearrange it again based on feeling. Where does it feel like the sofa should go?

2. Place your left shoe on first for one week, and then place your right shoe on first for four days. Vary the exercise randomly.

3. Drive to work on different routes, at different times.

4. Every day for 20-30 minutes walk around your house or neighborhood guided only by feeling. Don’t censor where you walk by “should’s” and “shouldn’ts.”

5. Pay attention to your activities. You may discover some comfortable habits may be superficial, serving no purpose. You may also realize how habits in behavior create habits in what you perceive. If you want to perceive more, give yourself more options.

One problem you may encounter is thinking you are altering routines when you are only creating larger ones. To correct this, again use feeling.

Adapted from Toltec Dreaming, by Ken Eagle Feather (Inner Traditions, 2007). Copyright (c) 2007 by Ken Eagle Feather. Reprinted by permission of Inner Traditions.
Adapted from Toltec Dreaming, by Ken Eagle Feather (Inner Traditions, 2007).


Sandra Goldstein
Sandra Goldstein5 years ago

Great tips for breaking bad habits, I would have explored this topic a little further. It is human nature to resist change. We get into doing the same thing day after day and before long our actions become like autopilot. If change is really hard and seems to create a bit of anxiety for you it’s a good idea to try to change one routine each day. As you continue to repeat the change from the day before, and then continue to add something new. Before long you will be out of your bad habits and onto a new path that will make you feel much better. For me it was about consistency. Once I make a change I try very hard to stick to it and to think of a positive affirmation as to why I am making the change. You will find it does get easier.

Danuta Watola
Danuta W5 years ago

Thanks for this article.

Leuth Novotny
.5 years ago

This is *exactly* the sort of off-the-wall advice I need regarding habit change, b/c the ability to break through to what I've forgotten was possible is dependent, in no-small-part, upon the ability to remember that which I've never realized I knew ... Trusting intuition often involves "tricking" the front brain into giving over control, so these techniques could have phenomenal impact (IMHO).

Jennifer C.
Past Member 5 years ago


Helen Wu
Helen Wu5 years ago


Marilyn Traver
Marilyn Traver5 years ago

thanks so much

Tim C.
Tim C5 years ago


Mollie Milesi

"A change is as good as a rest," or so they say...I like the idea of doing something just a bit differently, to refresh and remotivate.

Marcel Elschot
Marcel Elschot5 years ago

thanks for sharing

Cathie Sparrow
Cathie Sparrow5 years ago

Thank you.