How to Change Your Life One Habit at a Time

It’s a constant niggle in the back of your mind.  Those changes you know you need to make. Exercise regularly.  Cut out the unhealthy snacks.  Start your day with yoga or meditation.  Floss.  Make your office clutter free. You have the best of intentions.  But somehow it all seems to fizzle out. You tell yourself each time that this time it will be different.  Or perhaps you’ve given up.  It’s all too hard.

The answer is not more willpower or some magical secret that you just haven’t discovered yet. It’s deceptively simple.

Focus on one habit at a time.

I know what you’re thinking: I’ll never get anywhere doing that!  I’m sure I can manage at least a couple of habits. Which is a fast track back to where you started.  Wondering why you can’t make those changes stick.

Follow these tips to successfully create your new habit:

 

  1.  Choose an easier habit to begin with.  Develop skills in creating new habits before you tackle more difficult changes.
  2. Spend time preparing for your new habit.  Perhaps you need to find that yoga mat or set up a meditation space.
  3. Concentrate on the habit for at least 6-8 weeks before starting another habit.  When we create new habits we are also creating new nerve pathways in our brains. We need to be patient and give this process time.  This is where we need the willpower.
  4. Starting with a habit that you do daily will increase your chances of success.
  5.  Think about a reward for doing your new habit each day.  I’ve always struggled a bit with rewards but I’m almost embarrassed to say that sticking gold stars on a chart is incredibly satisfying and very effective with my current habit of daily meditation.
  6.  Enlist the help of friends, family or a coach to keep you accountable.

Imagine tackling a new habit every two months.  Now visualize yourself at the end of the next twelve months with six of those habits now part of your life.

You’ve changed your world.  One habit at a time.

I’d love to learn your tips for successfully creating healthy habits.  Let me know in the comments below.

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6 thoughts on “How to Change Your Life One Habit at a Time

  1. Great post Claire. And this is so true:  “I know what you’re thinking: I’ll never get anywhere doing that!  I’m sure I can manage at least a couple of habits. Which is a fast track back to where you started.”  I’ve just recently come to the realization that tackling multiple habits at once is likely why I’m failing to change them and that quote hit home for me. Thank you for the excellent advice and tips! 

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