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8 Tips To Change And Develop Habits

8 Tips To Change And Develop Habits

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:

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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.

2. Begin

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.

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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.

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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.

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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

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Last Updated on June 19, 2019

10 Best Ted Talks About Procrastination That Will Ignite Your Motivation

10 Best Ted Talks About Procrastination That Will Ignite Your Motivation

There are two types of people in this world; one who wants to complete their work as early as possible and one who wants to delay it as much they can. The first category of this depicts ‘precrastinators’ and the latter one are termed as ‘procrastinators’.

Much has been researched and published about procrastination; most of the studies terming it as detrimental to one’s health and adding to stress levels. Though, there are ‘procrastinating apologists’ as you would call them who proclaim there are a few benefits of it as well. But scientists have argued that the detriments of procrastination far outweigh the short-term benefits of it.

Everybody procrastinates, but not everybody is a procrastinator. Procrastination is habitual, not situational.

For an employee, it means piling up work until the end hours of their shift and then completing it in a hurry. For a student, it means not studying for an exam that is due the next week and cramming up the whole book one night before.

If you fall into this category, do not worry, there have also been articles published and speeches given by successful leaders on how procrastinators aren’t so bad after all.

Here are 10 of the best Ted Talks about procrastination that will help you regain motivation:

1. Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator, by Tim Urban

Tim Urban gives his funny uptake on procrastination and dives deep into how a procrastinator’s mind functions. He goes ahead and tells the audience about how ‘precrastinators’ have a rational decision-maker in their mind but in a procrastinator’s mind, there are two other entities existing — the ‘instant gratification monkey’ and ‘the panic monster’

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From the video, you will learn how to stay aware of the ‘instant gratification monkey’ whenever you have to complete a task.

2. The Surprising Habits Of Original Thinkers, by Adam Grant

In this video, Adam Grant builds on the concepts of ‘instant gratification monkey’ and ‘the panic monster,’ and marks a balance between ‘precrastinators’ and procrastinators giving existence to a productive and creative persona.

He talks about how a lot of great personalities in the course of history were procrastinators giving an example of Martin Luther King Jr. delaying the writing of his speech. ‘I have a dream’ was not in the script but was an original phrase by the leader; he opened himself to every possible avenue by not going with the script.

You can learn about how one has to be different and better rather than be the first-mover, going deep into the correlation between original thinkers and procrastinators.

3. An End To Procrastination, by Archana Murthy

According to a survey,[1] 20% of Americans are chronic procrastinators. Study after study shows chronic procrastination isn’t just laziness and poor time-management, but is actually a byproduct of negative emotions such as guilt, anxiety, depression and low self-worth — which is different from the contrary belief.

Archana Murthy gives us an insight into the procrastinator’s plight and provides ways to help the procrastinator in you.

For a fellow procrastinator, you should check out her good advice on how to end it.

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4. Why We Procrastinate, by Vik Nithy

Vik Nithy has already found 23 companies before coming to give his speech on procrastination. He puts forward the structure of our brain, showing the prefrontal cortex as the intelligent one telling us to complete the assignment due next day.

Procrastinators are threatened by complex work which gives them anxiety and that is where Amygdala comes in telling us to find pleasure in other activities.

Going ahead, you’ll from him how to overcome procrastination i.e. planning for goals, time, resources, process, distractions, and for failure.

5. Trust The Procrastinator, by Valerie Brown

Frankly, this is one of the best speeches on procrastination given on the TedTalks platform. Valerie Brown tells us that we live in a society where every body wants everything right now and procrastinators aren’t in those ‘right-now’ people.

She gives us an example of great procrastinators like Leonardo Da Vinci, who regarded himself as a failure at one point of time and took 16 years to complete the Mona Lisa. She gives us another perspective on procrastinators that it isn’t necessarily bad for one’s career or health.

6. Procrastination Is The Key To Problem Solving, by Andrea Jackson

Andrea Jackson gives us her two categories of procrastinators: the accidental procrastinators and the deliberate procrastinators. She puts Leonardo Da Vinci in the former category and Thomas Edison in the latter one.

There is a part where she labels procrastinators as unlocking a supersonic jigsaw puzzle in their head when they procrastinate; it means bringing thousands of ideas in one’s head when one procrastinates and keeps thinking about it. She calls Salvador Dali and Aristotle as deliberate procrastinators where they used to delay work in order to achieve a more creative result.

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In this video, you’ll learn a new perspective about procrastinators.

7. The Vaccination For Procrastination, by Bronwyn Clee

Bronwyn Clee takes us in the psychology of a procrastinator, telling us that fear stops us taking up new work.

She shares how she taught herself to be a decision-maker and not to fear if she will be able to take an action or not. From this video, you will learn how to bring the change in yourself and end procrastination.

8. I’m Not Lazy, I’m Procrastinating, by Victoria Gonzalez

Coming from a millennial, this is more relatable to the younger generation.

Victoria Gonzalez tells us that procrastination has nothing do with time-management skills. In fact, a procrastinator puts off work but with an intention to complete it; lazy people are the opposite of that who don’t even try.

9. Change Anything! Use Skillpower Over Willpower, by AI Wizler

Al Wizler, cofounder of VitalSmarts, gives us an example of her mother’s smoking habits which she wanted to quit but she just couldn’t even after trying for years. Eventually, she died of cancer.

He reminds us to the need to take control of the forces that influence our decisions, rather than letting them take control of ourselves.

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In this video, you’ll learn the importance of self-reflection, identifying your behaviours, and getting to work on it.

10. How To Motivate Yourself To Change Your Behaviour, by Tali Sharot

Tali Sharot, a neuroscientist explains how we behave when put through alternating situations.

She has found that people get to work when they are rewarded for an action immediately. Procrastinators can get themselves to work and reward themselves for it, which will lead to a change in their behaviour if they actually start that process of working sooner and completing it.

In this video, you’ll learn about the role of celebrating small wins and tracking your progress when you’re trying to reach your goals.

The Bottom Line

Procrastinators can find all kinds of advices on TedTalks.

A few of them, defending the idea and proclaiming that it actually allows for a more creative process and one that people shouldn’t feel so guilty about. Some of them, giving suggestions on how to put an end to it and making you a faster worker.

It all depends on how you want to perceive it and if you want to, you can find the cure for this ailment.

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Featured photo credit: Han Chau via unsplash.com

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