I’ve spent a great deal of time trying to find out how successful people manage to change their habits. Because, after all, success comes with successful habits, good shape with healthy habits, and everything we want to achieve requires us to do certain things repeatedly.
In order to change for the better and take control over our life, we need to turn our bad habits into good ones.
And what I’ve noticed, didn’t surprise me at all: there are certain steps to take in order to develop a new habit. They are not hard at all.
Just the contrary, I’m talking about a few simple things you need to focus on. And once you start doing that, the lifestyle you’ve been waiting for will come.
Here is what you need to know if you want to change your habits:
1. One habit at a time
People usually want to have it all. And whenever it comes to developing habits, they want to replace all their bad ones with good ones. And of course, they fail. Then, they usually don’t try a second time because they are negative and disappointed in themselves, have lost hope and are sure they’ll fail again. But they haven’t realized that it’s their approach that is wrong.
The right way to do it is to work on one habit at a time. Whatever it is that you want, concentrate only on it.
Beginning is the hardest and most important part of the process. Just start. Then everything will fall into place. Don’t think about it too much, don’t plan it in detail, don’t wait for Monday or the beginning of the next month to start. Do it now.
3. Start small
To make things so easy that you just won’t be able to say no, you should divide the habit you want to start doing into tiny steps. And then start with the first step. For example, if you want to become a writer the first thing is to write daily. That’s a big habit for those who haven’t done it before. But if you start small it won’t be overwhelming.
Set the goal of writing one paragraph each day, let’s say in the morning after you get up or before you go to bed in the evening. That will make things easier for later when you’ll have to write 500 words or a page a day.
4. Be consistent
Consistency is the key to success.
If you want to start running, just run for a few minutes, but do it each day. If you want to get up earlier, get up 10 minutes before your usual time, do it every single day.
5. Have a trigger
Do what you want to develop a habit which relates to something else that you’re already doing daily? Go to the gym after you finish work, meditate right after you wake up, read or write as a part of your morning routine, etc.
That will be your reminder and you’ll have no excuse to skip the action.
6. Focus on doing the action today and forget about results
If you’re obsessing too much about the final result – waiting for improvement, being impatient, stressing over and worrying about it when you don’t see progress – you are more likely to perform poorly.
Instead, forget about what’s going to happen. You create your future now and nothing else matters besides what you do today to change your habit. So stick to it by taking a small step each day. That’s all you need to do.
7. Enjoy the process
Enjoying the process of changing your habits helps a lot. Be positive and be confident in your abilities. Willpower and motivation go together with feeling contented and enjoying the transformation.
8. Never miss 3 days in a row
You’ve missed a day. It happens. Don’t take it too hard on yourself. You’ve missed a second one. Well, that should be a rare thing, but it’s fine. But when you miss taking your small step 3 times, there’s a big chance you’ll give up. So don’t let that happen.
Keep these 8 tips in mind and you’ll succeed in whatever you’re trying to achieve. Having changed one habit will make it so much easier for you to work on a second one and do it even better.
Start. Small. Now. Focus.
Simple as that!
Featured photo credit: Silvia Travel Jump via flickr.com