Habits

Today is habit day for us. There are many habit quotes. Here are a couple I like: 

“ Depending on what they are, our habits will either make us or break us. We become what we repeatedly do.” – Sean Covey

“Successful people aren’t born that way. They become successful by establishing the habit of doing things unsuccessful people don’t like to do.” – William Makepeace Thackeray.

Today we are going to look at how to make that great destiny and the meaningful life purposes you have been choosing in the first week and those wonderful goals you made this week really happen. Today’s subject is habits. I hope you have been enjoying these blogs and have found them helpful. A reminder that today is the last day to receive the goal give away before the new give away on Monday. Welcome here today. I am glad you came!

Now on to our subject of habits. Here are some basic principles about habits:

1. Forming a habit begins with understanding that you need to form one. You notice that something is not happening in your life that you want to have happen.

2. You have a big “why” you want to have this change in your life, if your ‘why’ is not passionate enough this won’t happen for you. Your ‘why’ must be written out and you need to check in with it at least once a week or more if you are having difficulty with your habit formation.

3. You then choose a habit that you believe will move you towards the goal that is important to you. Check out the 3 goals you are going to do for the next 3 months. What habits would be important to move those along? Perhaps you have some habits that have served you well in the past and that you could reinstate, or perhaps you need some brand new habits.

4. When you are using your new habit, you are then rewarded with movement towards your goal which helps to sustain the habit and it can then become automatic.

This sounds simple but as you know, it is not necessarily simple. Each of the above elements are important. 

Let’s think of more. You have also learned from our first week together that visualization is important and actually works. So do use visualization to help you to see your goal realized and the reward becomes stronger and more potent for you.

Another thing that I find really works for me is to connect the habit I am wanting to cultivate in my life to a system I already have in place, something I already do successfully. For instance, making a cup of tea, which I do several times a day. I boil the kettle which takes a couple of minutes or so, then I put the tea bag or loose tea in the container of my choice and steep the tea for about 4 minutes, then I put some cream in it and I am done. Now to the habit I want to cultivate. I realized that I really need to have order in my house to be free to create and work. I decided to make a new habit that I could hook to my tea making. Now every time I make tea that takes about 6 minutes, I clean my kitchen. Whatever dishes or mugs that are in the sink get washed in that time or the dishwasher gets emptied or the counters get cleaned. I used to just hang around and think while the tea wa being made but now I feel really great about a tidy and clear kitchen. That is a simple example that you can use for the many systems you already do in your life. 

A habit that really helps the brain is to set an intention for what you will do in your day, writing things down, of course. I am going to close with another helpful idea when changing habits and trying to sustain them until they are automatic.

Inside our head, we are most often creating stories about our lives. These stories are not necessarily true to facts but they are our perceptions and they are very powerful and will become more true. So when building new habits, we help ourselves by creating a story about these habits that are very positive. The brain does not differentiate truth. Some elements that may be a part of your story are as follows:

This habit makes me feel strong/healthy/empowered (or some other positive trait).

I am proud of doing this habit.

I have had some great successes with this.

I’m learning a lot with this habit.

I’ve had good experiences with this habit.

There are some exciting things about this that I’d like to share with people.

I can appreciate the little things about this habit.

There are things I genuinely love about this habit.

This can sometimes be a struggle but it’s definitely worth it.

This habit is improving my life in multiple ways.

I’m lucky to be able to do this habit.

There are things about this habit that I look forward to.

I’ve missed doing this habit sometimes, but over the long run it is okay.

Doing this habit makes me more resilient.

When I’ve done this habit, I feel accomplished and satisfied.

I feel like a better person when I do this habit.

Slowly, with thoughts like these and others you might think of, you’ll start to have a very positive story about the habit.

And that will make all the difference — not only will you want to stay with it longer, you’ll enjoy it more each time you do it.

Nex week we will look at some habits that have helped others. We will look at some brain training and how you can make it through the darker days that are harder to manage let alone move forward in your goals. Reminder of the goals give away – it is your last chance to get it today! Have a great weekend! Go forth and be wonderful today!

Author: Lynda Chalmers