Habit change is something that often doesn’t come easily. It’s easy to say at 10pm that you’re going to wake up at 5 and exercise before work. At 5am it’s easy to hit snooze and forgo that plan altogether. I have fallen victim to that trend all too many times but then again we all have. How can you change habits most effectively? I’m no expert and I don’t want to speak out of turn but I know what works for me. That’s what I’m going to share with you today, five things that help me create habit change.
- Establish Priorities
I find that if I don’t understand or have a goal behind creating change it’s harder to accomplish. I find it helpful to sit down and establish what priorities are important to me. That way when the going gets rough, I have motivation to fall back on. It’s not full proof but in my experience, it really helps.
- Create Incentives
Habit change is difficult and warrants rewarding yourself. I heard on a podcast, the most effective way to reward yourself is reinforcing your goal with your reward. For example, if you want to journal every day, perhaps a new journal or pen. If you like to do yoga, maybe a new mat or pair of leggings. The range can be endless. The rewards can increase over time allowing you to feel that you’re achieving a goal even if the end result is still far away.
- Write a Letter to Yourself
I think this is something that can be the most impactful. I find it helpful to write a letter to yourself for moments in need. That can be a letter for why you’re doing this, reminding yourself when things get rough. A letter to thank your future self for enduring and pushing despite all the hardships you know are ahead. Even something just to give you motivation or gratitude. You know yourself better than anyone, you know how to motivate and help yourself.
- Acknowledge the Journey Will Be Challenging
It’s important at the start of any change to acknowledge the challenges that lie ahead. I like to go into things like this with an open mind. It’s easier, for me personally, to mentally prepare and anticipate difficulties. This makes it easier for me to endure when they arise. The reality is, no one is perfect. If you go in with the expectation that everything will be easy, it’ll feel like giving up is a viable option because you didn’t know what you were getting into. Don’t go in blind.
- Give Yourself Grace
Once again, nobody’s perfect. Changing habits, especially lifelong habits, is extremely challenging. It’s okay to feel lost, unmotivated, and frustrated. You’re making an effort and when you’re feeling low, make sure you’re patting yourself on the back for what you’re doing daily. It’s easy to perpetuate bad habits when you’re unaware of them. Employ mindfulness and be considerate about what contributes to the habits you’re trying to change.
This is a small list of doable things that create a larger habit change. Again, I’m not an expert. I know what works for me and I’m reiterating that to you. I hope that this gives you some motivation to start and aids you along your journey.
I hope that you’re having a great day. I hope your day is filled with joy, laughter, and positivity. I hope you find peace, love, and happiness