Habits vs. Addictions


26 May

I have started a new habit that just may be bordering an addiction.

Every time I go into the commissary (military grocery store), I pick up a package of sushi. Regardless of whether I go in to buy 1 item or 89, I just cannot seem to resist this freshly made treat.

My selections almost always consist of shrimp or crab, but sometimes I will throw in a wild card and get salmon. However, there is always avocado. Frankly, there cannot be sushi without avocado. That would just be silly and unheard of.

I didn’t always do this though. I mean I liked their sushi and would get it from time to time, but now, it is a must. There is never a question of whether or not I will get sushi, it is merely a question of which variation will I find and eat.

This new requirement got me thinking about habits. According to dictionary.com, a habit is an acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it has become almost involuntary or a customary practice/use. I think my recent regularity of commissary sushi purchases would indeed fit these descriptions.

I think most people would agree that you can have good habits, and bad ones. I would have to say eating sushi a few times a month would fall into the good category. When I first started to write this though, I referred to this new routine as an addiction since I do it automatically now, every time I go into the store. However, when I looked up the definition of addiction, it didn’t quite fit. According to dictionary.com, an addiction is the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming, as narcotics, to such an extent that its cessation causes severe trauma. Hhhhmmmm. Yeah, I like sushi after my commissary trips, but I wouldn’t say that I am enslaved to it, and I certainly don’t think I will fall down in physical convulsions if I don’t eat it after one commissary trip.

Now, I might agree that it is psychologically habit forming to some extent though. I get simple, yet utter satisfaction eating my little treat after my shopping trip, and look forward to it quite honestly. Isn’t that what most habits, the good ones anyway, are for though-to bring us comfort, happiness and pleasure? (And in this case, there is the bonus of protein too!) It is all those little habits in our lives that build our routines. It is all those little moments that give our day substance. And, it is all those little moments that pull us through hard times. These are not the case for bad habits and certainly not addictions. Well, I suppose an addiction could pull you through a hard time, but in the long run, it is not a helpful thing.

Bad habits may not rank up there with addictions, but they certainly don’t help people either. Procrastination makes us stress out and unprepared. Smoking damages are lungs and costs us money. Overeating helps us gain weight. The list goes on and on as we all have at least some bad habits. The bottom line is, like Benjamin Franklin said, your good habits need to outweigh the bad.

“Your net worth to the world is usually determined by what remains after your bad habits are subtracted from your good ones.”

That’s a bit harsh Ben. However, I have heard the truth hurts. And if I think about it….After I subtract my bad habits of overeating, multitasking, saying yes to everyone, not getting enough sleep, refusing to read instructions and procrastinating on big tasks, I think all I am left with is … my habit of eating commissary sushi.

Not sure that is a remarkable net worth to the world, but hey, at least me and the sushi maker man are supporting each other’s contributions, and that right there has made the world just a bit brighter for us both:)

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For Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge ~ Challenger’s Choice (Food Photography).