How To Change Absolutely Any Habit.
Imagine if you’re able to change any habit you have? Which habit would you change?
If you’re able to change absolutely any habit, you’re able to change your life. No questions about it. Your habits are one of the most powerful ways you control your life.
40-50 % of your life is lived on autopliot, so you can totally say your habits shape your life.
Most of the thoughts you have today are the same you had yesterday, and the day before. Your habits are anything from drinking coffee first thing in the morning, to brushing your teeth, to how you talk to your kids and partner, to how you deal with problems and conflicts, to how you dress and do your hair.
Habits are subconscious, it’s something you do automatically. Some of your habits were formed when you were a child, like brushing your teeth, your beliefs, opinions and many thoughts. Good habits are great. Imagine if you had to conscious about every little thig you do? You’d be exhausted by 9 in the morning.
How long does it take to form a habit?
You know creating a new habit doesn’t happen overnight. It takes a long time. A lot has been said about exactly how long it takes to create a new habit or change a bad one, but apparently it’s individual. For some it might take 90 days while for others it’ll take longer or a shorter amount of time.
I’ve been going to the gym for about 5 weeks now, but it’s not a habit yet. I still wake up in the morning thinking “oh no” but I’ll keep going and see what happens. My cue is as soon as I’ve done the kids packed lunches, and they are up and almost ready, then I’ll go. I leave my gym clothes out and ready the night before to make it easy for myself. I don’t want anything messed with that routine at this early stage in my new habit building.
How to change absolutely any habit
Habit changing is a skill, not a special gift you’re born with. Everyone can change a habit or create a new one.
It’s definitely not easy. It might be one of the hardest things to do, but you CAN change absolutely any habit because it’s a skill you can learn.
Habits are best changed when fuelled by a belief. Pick a habit you want, be crystal clear on your bigger reason why you want this habit and your belief behind it.
Create a plan for how and when you’re going to do this new activity that will lead to a habit. It’s a good idea to lean against another habit you have already.
Ex: if you’re going to meditate for 10 minutes in the morning, try doing it before or after you brush your teeth.
This is also what Charles Duhigg calls “Cue”: any trigger that tells your brain to use this habit.
Process, repetition, routine, patience.
This is where you build momentum. You build the new habit by doing the task continously.
You build a new habit over time. You’ll skip sometimes but just pick up where you left and keep going.
Your brain decides if the reward is worth the effort, so if you want to change a habit, make the new reward as good as the old reward.
Let’s say you want to eat less sugar in the evening. Then try and create the same feel-good feeling by replacing it with something else that’ll make you feel good, but doesn’t have sugar in it.
In his book “The Power Of Habit” Charles Duhigg talks about when we first do something new, our brain works hard to process all this new information, but as soon as we understand how it works it becomes easier and the behavior starts to become automatic.
How you can get started with creating a new good habit that will make your life better:
Take an honest look at how you spend your day.
What are the first thoughts you have when you wake up in the morning?
What thoughts go through your mind as you get ready for work?
What’s the first thing you do every day when you come home from work?
How do you fall asleep at night?
What do you eat for breakfst, lunch and dinner?
How much do you snack in a day?
How many hours of telly do you watch every day?
Is your phone always within reach so you can check Insta? (20 times a day)
Those are just a few questions to inspire you to think about your daily habits, all the things you do on autopilot and if there is anything you’d like to change.
What I’d watch out for most is not what you do, but what you think.
Because your thoughts end up creating your life. If all you think are negative thoughts about yourself, I’ll start there.
One of the reasons I love coaching is because I get to help you create a new habit that’ll have a positive effect on your life. Accountability is huge. Getting your butt off the couch is easier when you have someone cheering you on.
Just imagine what 1 new habit can do for your life?
Or what changing a bad habit for a good habit can do for you?
What is the one habit you wish you had?
Let me know n the comments.