Whether it’s to exercise more, drink more water, get 10K steps a day or to spend more time with your family, we all have habits we want to form in order to enhance our lives.
But, if you’ve ever tried changing a habit, you’ll quickly learn it’s not exactly the easiest project to undertake. So, what can be done to help you make the change?
Set a realistic goal
Realistic means different things to different people. If you find yourself not hitting your daily or weekly goal consistently, try adjusting it to help set you up for success.
Assume and plan for obstacles
Assuming willpower will take you across the finish line seamlessly is a mistake many people make. Obstacles will present themselves and the best strategy is to see them coming and have a plan in place for when they do.
Example: “I will go take a 30 min. walk every day. I know an obstacle will be the changing seasons and to prepare I will buy extra warm socks and a hat to ensure I can still go on a walk and be comfortable.”
Understand your “why?”
You must know why you want to change. The greatest success will come if there is intrinsic motivation. What that means is that you aren’t looking to prove anything to anyone, receive praise from others or feel accepted. But rather, you are choosing to make this habit change because it will make you feel and be your best self.
Create an environment that ensures success
Whether it’s keeping a change of gym clothes in the car or purchasing a reusable water bottle to up your water intake, there are likely ways you can change your environment to ensure success is as easy as possible!
Write it down
Whether you prefer pen and paper or an app on your phone,having tangible proof that you have made a commitment to yourself can help you stay on track. Another option is setting a reminder on your phone to keep you going throughout the day or the week.
Tell someone else
What better way to stay accountable than telling someone you trust what change you are implementing? Even if they don’t actively keep you accountable, you will be more likely to follow through since you made a promise to someone else.
It takes anywhere from 18 to 254 days for a person to form a new habit, and it takes the average person about 60 days for a new behaviour to “become automatic.” Although patience is key, so is being prepared. We wish you well in making the most of this year!