Most aspect of our lives are made up of the habits we've developed. But, if your current auto pilot behaviour is not serving you or your goals, how do you build good habits that actually stick?
Simply put, we are a total sum of the habits we repeat day in and day out. No matter how many things we’d like to change about ourselves, self improvement can only come when we build good habits.
Starting a new habit, making them stick and then maintaining the habit until it becomes automatic is not as difficult as you may think. Over the years, I have learned to build better habits for my mindset, health, finances and relationships, that have shaped me into a completely different person.
Following the right strategy for building good habits that stick, is the key to successfully changing how you show up in life and who you become.
No matter what you want to change in life, following my simple habit change process below, will allow you to build good habits – and make them stick!
How I Build Good Habits that Stick
HOW T0 START A NEW HABIT
Get clear on 'why' you need to build the good habit
Forming a new habit can be a challenge. Especially if your reason to change is not as strong as your excuses to remain the same.
Whenever I get motivated to make a change in my life, I start with my ‘why’.
- Why do I want it?
- How will it impact my life?
- In what way will it empower me?
- Who will I become if I make this change?
My ‘why’ is the motivating factor to take action. Inspiration for change may come and go. So it’s important to get clear at the start, how the change will benefit you. This way, you don’t have to rely on willpower to build the good habits for the change.
Creating a strong ‘why’ is the foundation for any habit building action you take towards the person you want to become.
Identify the obstacles towards the good habit
Once I have a solid ‘why’, I look at all the obstacles in my life that could hinder me building a new habit.
Those obstacles could involve my current mindset, my environment or even the people I surround myself with. Identifying those obstacles and making a plan of how to deal with them is key in habit formation.
In order to build habits that stick, you need to make it as easy as possible to take action. That includes being aware of all the aspects of your life that may throw you off your focus.
HOW TO BUILD A GOOD HABIT
Start with a tiny habit change
In his book Atomic Habits, James Clear sets out the importance of taking small actions towards changing your habits.
We only have a limited supply of willpower to draw on each day. So, in order to implement the habit change, we need to ensure our excuses do not railroad us into not taking action.
“Make your first habit change action so easy, that you can’t say no to following through.”
An initial period of implementing small actions increases your confidence. After that, you can start to build more daily actions towards the habit change.
Record your actions with a habit tracker
Most of our daily actions are on autopilot. Keeping track of your habits is the foundation to building good ones that stick.
I am a lover of habit trackers! (Check out my shop to grab one for yourself!) Habits trackers have helped me lose weight, get out of debt, sleep better and learn new things.
Habit trackers help you measure your progress and keeps you accountable to your self.
- It creates a visual cue that can remind you to act.
- It is motivating to see the progress you are making. You don’t want to break your streak.
- It feels satisfying to record your success in the moment.
Using a habit tracker gives you automatic feedback. When you feel like you’re not making progress, a tracker is the daily reminder that you are taking action towards that goal – even if the results are not showing up as quickly as you would like.
HOW TO MAKE A GOOD HABIT STICK
Review your habit tracker & adjust your routine
Once you start tracking your habits and building on them, you start to observe times when taking action was difficult.
When this is the case – do not stop! Instead, adjust your routine and environment to create less friction towards taking the actions.
Continue to track your actions whilst also, removing the obstacles.
If you fall off the wagon and miss doing the action for a day or two, do not get discouraged. Identify the barrier for the days you missed and make a plan to remove them.
Reinforce your 'why' for building the good habit
There may be times during your habit building journey where life hits you a curve ball and you get sidetracked from working towards the formation of the new habit.
This is where your ‘why’ comes in. Reflect on the reasons you want the habit change and remind yourself that you are capable of becoming that person.
What matters is finding a way to get back on track!
Celebrate your small wins
Building a new habit that sticks, is a process. It’s important not to get hung up with doing everything perfectly. As you build the new habit, celebrate your progress – no matter how small.
These celebrations fuel your emotions, give you inspiration and build your confidence.
How I build good habits that stick
Some habits can take weeks or even months to build. You need to be as consistent as you can be, in order for them to be an automatic part of your routine and lifestyle.
You will experience some set backs (I’ve had loads!), but don’t give up. It’s all a part of the journey towards becoming the person you want to be.
If you’re looking to kickstart your habit building journey, check out my work book: How To Create a New Habit to Achieve Any Goal. And follow my in-depth process of how I build good habits that stick.
I’d love to hear what habit you want to start building today.
Leave a comment below!
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A London born girl who got tired of her excuses & finally took action to change her life at the age of 41!
Join me as I share the habits, systems and mindset shifts that allowed me to lose 30lbs of weight, get out of £20k debt and accomplish new goals to create a fully brazen life.
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