We all have many habits, some good and the others not so good. Our habits are the behaviors that we have developed over a course of time. Eventually, the habits occur almost automatically.
We all have bad habits too. Some have less, some have more. Subconsciously, we know and want to break our bad habits and keep the good ones we have. For most people, it takes about 3 to 4 weeks for a new behavior to turn to a routine or a habit. Here are 7 steps that can help you make or break any habit of yours.
1. Set a goal
As the first step, you have to set yourself a personal goal. Especially if you are trying to break a bad habit, we suggest you try to phrase your goal in the form of a positive statement. You should also write your goal and keep it someplace you can always or frequently see. Commitment to a piece of paper will help you stay committed to it. It will also help if you remind yourself repeatedly about your goal.
2. Be prepared with a replacement behavior
If you aim at developing a new habit, then the replacement behavior would be the goal itself. This is an essential step when you are trying to break or stop a habit. If you want to stop a habit or behavior, you should have a superior or an advanced behavior to put in its place as a safe alternative or a backup plan.
3. Realize and be aware of your triggers
Behavior patterns do not exist independently. Often, each habit is linked to another habit or a regular part of your regular routine. For instance, many smokers automatically light up a cigarette after eating. Think when, why and what triggers your habits and try to avoid them.
4. Put reminders for yourself
You can do this by leaving yourself small sticky notes or reminders in the places in the house or work you often are. You can stick yourself a note on the mirror, refrigerator, near your computer or some other place where you go regularly. You can also have a friend or family member remind you of your goal regularly.
5. Get help and support from someone
This is an easy, effective yet obvious suggestion. Any work gets easier with help from someone you can count on. Ask a reliable friend or family member to help you stay focused on the goal and also to remind you about your aim once in a while. It can boost motivation and keep you right on track.
6. Write your daily affirmations
Write a sentence or phrase in the present tense, and write it 10 times a day for 21 days repeatedly. This will help you make your goal a part of your subconscious. It will not only remind you to keep up the new behavior but will also keep you focused and motivated.
7. Reward yourself for the progress at set intervals
Focus on your goal, 1 day at a time. But, give yourself some credit for the achievement and maybe also a small treat at 1, 3 and 6 months. The rewards do not have to be big or fancy. Doing so will give you both incentive and boost your motivation.
People who have tried to make or break a habit, they will know it is not an easy business. For more Help, get in touch with Living In Wellbeing! We are always happy to assist you!