Coll Writes

You know how I do.

642 Things to Write About Challenge: Week 10

Written By: Colleen - Mar• 08•13

“Describe one of your bad habits and why you secretly get joy out of it.”

Oy.  This one is going to make me seem a little bit strange, but I actually came to this very realization over the past few weeks: I love biting my nails.  In full disclosure, I tried to give it up for Lent this year.  Jay hates that I’m a nail biter, so I figured this would be the perfect time to try to kick this habit.

My resolution lasted about 12 minutes.  I try to catch myself – I honestly, truly d0 – but the more I try or think about quitting, I can’t seem to stop it.  It’s mostly an anxiety thing, but biting my nails isn’t something that I only do when I’m bored or feeling anxious.  I chew on my nails when I’m thinking, walking, driving, surfing the ‘Net, watching TV, etc.  It’s at its worst when I’m driving, though.  It’s not so much that I get joy out of biting my nails, but I’ve been doing it probably for the past 25 years, so it’s an act that gives me familiarity and in a way, comfort.  Control, perhaps, though while trying unsuccessfully to stop over the past month, I have at times compared my nail biting habit to that of an out-of-control alcoholic trying to stop drinking.  In fact, I’ve actually gone to bite my nails probably a good 10 times since I’ve started writing this post, haha.  I know it’s a disgusting habit and I know how many germs I’m probably subjecting myself too.  I grew up watching my grandpa and my uncle be chronic nail biters, so I feel like I’m genetically predisposed to this bad habit, haha.  I still hope to beat the system, though.  One day, I’ll quit it!

So, what is your bad habit and what “joy” do you secretly get out of it?

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  1. Carol says:

    Yuck Colleen!!! Lol. I chew ice. My dentist keeps yelling at me. He says it cracks teeth. I’ve had to get a couple of crowns so I really try not to do it.

  2. Cackleberry (Michaela) says:

    Colleen, I have had a bad habit of cuticle biting, and before that about a decade of nail biting. My solution was to start painting my nails I know that they chip, but I paint them most nights a different colour. It has become a sort of “zen” activity for me. Not sure if that helps.

    Anyhoo, love the blog 🙂

    • Colleen says:

      @Michaela – I’m also an awful cuticle biter. My cuticles look awful. I used to get manicures every week or so at home in NY and it really did help and they were looking good, but that got expensive and I couldn’t do it as much in Raleigh – the cost of getting a mani/pedi in NY was the exact same price as it is to get JUST your nails done at a lot of places here in Raleigh! When I paint my own nails, it doesn’t work because I always justify it as “I can always touch them up.” Paying to have them done motivates me to not mess it up, hahaha.

      And thanks! I’m glad you’re liking it. I’m having a renewed fun writing it lately. 🙂

  3. Michael says:

    Let me just say “ditto”. I’ve tried stopping and I have Connor yell at me to stop if he catches me. I ended up driving about 6-7 hours a day, that’s a killer.

    • Colleen says:

      @Michael – Yeah, Jay constantly yells at me to stop, but it doesn’t work so well. At least I’m not the only one. I’ll yell at you to stop if I see you doing it in Raleigh.

  4. Nicole says:

    I’m a nail biter from way back. There are probably pictures of me biting my nails as an infant. I’m really bad about it when I read, and I read a whole lot as a kid, so it is a pretty well established habit at 30. I haven’t really tried to quit recently, but I really probably should. Did you ever watch that show on TLC about people’s crazy bad addictions, like eating laundry detergent? I never saw a whole episode, but just seeing the ads for the show always made me feel a little better about my “normal” habit. 🙂

  5. This looks delicious! I have a rosemary/cranberry focaccia recipe that I do but it doesn't contain pine nuts which I think would add another layer of deliciousness!Best,Bonnie

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