Recently a friend and I were discussing something we both do–when faced with the possibility of engaging in in a “bad” habit, like eating another piece of cake, taking another drink etc. we’re “aware” of what we’re about to but do the thing anyway, even though we know the consequences, how we’ll feel when we engage in them, etc.
But when she said, I’m aware it’s coming and do it anyway, I realized, it isn’t full moment-to-moment awareness. She isn’t aware all the time. Somewhere between “seeing” the approaching action and actually doing what she/we know is unwholesome, she/we check out. We loose mindfulness and engage in a habitual behavior that harms us. When awareness is truly moment to moment, habits are not acted on, and different choices are made.