Habits – The Good, The Bad, The Ugly
Very seldom do any of us need to commit to a bad habit to keep it going. Those bad habits just seem to follow us no matter how much we want to stop. Good habits, however, take time and commitment to form and stick to.
Think about it…How easy was it for you to start
- …drinking soda?
How hard was it to quit? Are you still trying?
Here are some ideas to get you started and help you along the way:
- Visualize the outcome. Feature the happiness you’ll feel, how you will look and your emotions each time you practice the good habit that you want to form.
- Write down the benefits. For example, if you commit to building your business, write down the financial burdens that would be lifted if you realize success. Would it be a child’s education – or a trip you’ve been fantasizing about? Also write down the sacrifices you’re going to have to make if you commit to the good habits. For example, if you’re committed to losing weight, you might not get to indulge in a big restaurant meal with your friends. Giving up alcohol may also cause some social repercussions with your friends.
- Keep going. Don’t quit if you experience a failure. When you’re truly committed, you don’t just give up at the first sign of trouble. Wars would never have been won and highly successful people would have never reached great heights if they quit after one or many failures.
- Engage your mind totally and completely. You’ve got to realize why the bad habit keeps plaguing you. Is it an addictive habit such as smoking or alcohol? If so, you may need some professional intervention.
- Focus on your performance rather than the consistency of your efforts. For example, if you’re committed to cardio exercises three days a week but only feel like doing some Yoga stretches, you’ve at least kept up the exercise routine – making the bad habit of not exercising easier to break.
Unfortunately, you are human and nothing happens automatically. You have to show up and do the work. To get anywhere with forming good habits or losing bad ones, you’ll have to commit to going through the struggle to get there. You can commit to a good habit for 30 days and have a pretty good head start on making it a permanent habit.
If you’re giving up something you really enjoy by changing a bad habit, be sure to replace it with something that won’t interfere with the good habit-forming, but that you’ll enjoy. Rewarding yourself is a good way to embed the habit and overwrite the bad ones.
Be sure that your habits are being formed or lost because you want it – and not what someone else thinks you should do. No matter how much you love, admire, or respect someone – you can’t do for them.
Lastly, if it’s something that you can’t go alone, get help. Accountability, coaching, and consistency are key.
Have you picked up any positive or you broken any undesirable habits successfully? I’d love to hear about it in the comments.