First, let’s get clear what a habit is. A habit is a learned behavior that becomes repetitive and tends to be done subconsciously. Because it is learned, it can be changed. There are habits that help us and habits that don’t. Today, let’s talk about forming new healthy habits.
There are times in our lives when we consciously want to change our behavior for the better and create new habits for ourselves. This could be getting in the habit of eating healthier and drinking more water. Or, it could be moving more and going for a daily walk. It could be work related, or spiritual, or… There are so many areas in our lives that could be better and made easier if we created new habits.
Getting into the habit of doing something is often easier said than done. We seem to acquire negative habits without any effort, but getting into positive habits can be a little more challenging.
Let’s break it down into a three step process that makes it easy to follow until we’ve internalized the new behavior and changed it to a true habit – something we do automatically without having to think about, like brushing our teeth.
#1 Decide: What will be your new habit?
The first step is to decide what you want that new habit to be. Be as specific as possible. Don’t just tell yourself you want to exercise more. Instead say this, “I will go for a 30 minute walk every day”. Deciding what your new habit will be and committing to when and how you’re going to do it, is half the battle. Be specific.
#2 Get It Done
The next few days will be the easiest. You’re motivated and excited to get this done. Sticking to your new habit isn’t an issue. But a few days in you’ll notice that it’s easy to slip back into old habits.
Maybe it’s raining and you don’t really want to go out and walk. Or maybe your day just gets away from you. This is when it’s important to have a daily reminder. Set an alert on your phone or add the new habit to your daily
to-do list for a while. Remind yourself. Make it in the forefront of your mind. Post a reminder on your bathroom mirror.
#3 Make It Part of Your Routine Until It Becomes A Habit
Which brings us to the last step. It takes some time before a new behavior becomes a true habit. Until then, a routine will work to your best advantage. Even before the new behavior becomes automatic, a routine will help you get it done without having to spend a lot of willpower or relying on daily reminders.
Attach your new habit to a present one. For example: Make that daily walk part of your before breakfast routine, or your after dinner routine. Have a date to walk with someone else for accountability.
Congratulations! Decide to create the new habit, practice the routine until it’s second nature and you’ll be well on your way to forming a new good habit.
Let me know in the comments what new habit you would like to create. AND, if you need help, please let me know.
Email me at Georgia@ZENgevity.com