Yesterday, we shared 10 Ways to Break A Bad Habit, great tips to get your new year started off on the right foot. Below are 10 Ways to Make A Good Habit Stick, these will help you work on your new year resolutions and goals for 2013.
- Consider the obstacles you are likely to face while building your new habit. Understanding what’s necessary upfront prevents discouraging surprises down the line.
- Avoid a complete reinvention. Start small and, if the process works, run it again for other habits you want to establish. Alternatively, break down a larger habit into its component parts and work on each separately.
- Repeat the habit as often as possible. Each time a habit is repeated, we make a little progress toward increasing the habit’s automaticity.
- Create a strong link between a specific situation and an action. Rather than resolving to eat healthier, think, “If I want a snack, I will eat a fruit or vegetable.”
- Fit the new habit into your daily routine by looking for an activity that forms the last link to a chain. For example, if after work you wash your face and change your clothes, add “jog for fifteen minutes” after the last scheduled activity. This way, you’re building on an already-established routine.
- Anticipate any fears or anxieties and prepare ways to deal with them. For example, “If I feel too tired to practice piano after work, then I will listen to inspirational music to motivate me.”
- To avoid dissatisfaction that might arise if you feel progress isn’t being made, create a support group to keep you motivated. Partner up with a friend, join a gym, or just have someone you can talk to about your problems.
- Monitor your progress and be aware of how your new habit is forming. Would it be better performed at a different time of day? In a different way?
- Don’t be too hard on yourself when you fail to perform a habit to your expectations, particularly when you miss opportunities to practice your habit. If you treat yourself too harshly, your willpower is likely to give out.
- Reward yourself, but sparingly. Don’t make your new habit rely on a reward system; a good habit will be successful when you do it for it’s own sake.
Please note: A copy of Making Habits, Breaking Habits: Why We Do Things, Why We Don’t, and How to Make Any Change Stick by Jeremy Dean was provided by the PR/Marketing agency.