Airing out the filing cabinet: how I gave up on biting my cuticles


Willpower becomes a habit by choosing a behaviour ahead of time and then following the routine when the inflection point arrives Charles Duhig

Since I can remember, I chewed my cuticles. On and off, I struggled with not picking at loose bits of skin. At it’s worst, my fingers throbbed in pain and the edges of my thumbs were giant scabs. Pretty.
I worked in retail and my hands were always on display, wrapping, asking for signatures or circling tourist maps. More that once, my gangrened hands were pointed out.
I worked on it and new that as long as my hands were neatly manicured, I wouldn’t chew so much. My brain enjoyed the pretty nails MORE than the release it got from the chewing. I started over riding my habit.
But at usual, chaos would land in my life and manicure wouldn’t happen and before long, my hands were gangrened again. This particular yoyo cycle of manicure to gangrene has been going on for about 5 years now. Before that! All gangrene, all the time.

Now, since creating my new morning habits, my need for more routine naturally spilled over into the nighttime habits leading into sleep time.

Cue: put on my caftan
Habit: apply vitamin E gel
Reward: pretty nails!

Remember awhile back when I asked you about your night routine?


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