“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.”, wise words from Greek philosopher Aristotle. Habits are acquired by regular repetition, we start to develop habits since birth intentionally and subconsciously. We can have good habits like waking up early, exercising regularly, or have bad habits like smoking.
Our brains cannot tell the difference between good or bad habits, but we can intentionally help build good habits to help us live a better lifestyle.
1) Set goals
Why is very important. Why are you building this habit? Is it to get rid of a bad habit or do you need to eat healthier for health reasons? Have a clear goal of how it is going to help you is very important to stay on track and be motivated. Write down your goal will give you clarity and help you focus on your end result.
2) Small changes make big impacts
You might want to transform your entire lifestyle but that won’t happen overnight and it’ll be even harder to stick to. After setting goals, give yourself mini targets to help you train your brain and work towards forming these habits for good. For example, if you want to start walking 10,000 steps everyday, this will be hard to do in one go. Give yourself a mini target to start walking 2000 steps in the first week and build up over the course of a month. This takes less effort physically and trains your brain to accept this new behaviour and you will find yourself less inclined to fall out of habit.
3) Work with your environment
New habits are easy to all out so creating an environment that works with you will help keep you motivated. If you want to do more exercise, keeping your gym clothes at work will eliminate the need to go home and change, hence no excuse to skip the gym altogether. Have a tendency to hit the snooze button and roll back into bed? Put your phone or alarm further away so you have to get out of bed to turn it off. Your surroundings can help or break your habits so utilise it to the best of your advantage.