My stubby, gnawed-off fingernails have always been embarrasing. I curl my fingers under my palm in photos, squirm away from holding hands, clasp my hands underneath tables or behind my back to conceal them. Bitten to the quick, red and raw; all ten of my fingers are constantly between my teeth. For nineteen years I have been biting my nails. Now is finally the time to quit.
I’m going cold turkey. Stopping entirely, no weaning period– just stopping. This is going to be a hard journey. Biting my hands is unattractive and unsanitary. I’m reminded of Violet Bouregaurde:
And the accompanying line:
For me, it’s nail biting.
Breaking myself of this will be hard. My hands are always attached to the end of my arms, they’re not something I can escape. It’s my first impulse when I’m embarrassed or anxious: pick away at the jagged edges of my nails.
HOW I PLAN TO KICK THE HABIT:
- paint my nails. If I spend some time on designing my nails to look pretty, I am less likely to bite them.
- incentive-ize myself. After a week of absolutely no biting, I’ll take myself to a movie or something.
- replace the habit with a less harmful action. Every single time I have the urge to nibble on my fingers, I will instead put on lotion.
- in order for this tactic to work, I’ve got to make it new and exciting. My gameplan is to buy some very nice scented lotions; so it is fresh in my mind and fun.
- to make this effective, I must put on lotion EVERY. SINGLE. TIME I have think of putting my hands to my mouth. This is about breaking the oral fixation and to occupy my hands; to prevent relapses.
My lotions are: French Riviera, Fiji Palm Beach, A Thousand Wishes, and Magic in the Air, all from Bath and Body Works.
Wish me success.