How to Develop Good Habits That Stick
We all know that developing good habits is essential in life, but it's not always easy. Many of us have tried and failed more times than we can admit to develop habits that stick, like getting up earlier or exercising regularly. The truth is, forming any kind of habit takes time, effort, and dedication. And the goods new is, there are some proven methods that can help you develop good habits and keep them going for the long haul. Let's take a look at these tips followed by some resources.
Start Small and Be Realistic:
One of the most important things to remember when trying to form a new habit is to set realistic goals. Don't aim too high right away; start small and work your way up. For example, if you want to start working out, running five miles a day is not realistic. Start with something small and manageable like taking a 30-minute walk each day and gradually increase the intensity from walking to jogging to running as your body gets accustomed to the routine.
Consistency is key when trying to form any kind of habit. You need to be consistent in order for your habit to stick; if you fall off track or give up too easily, you may never form the habit. So, make sure you stay committed and put in the effort every single day, especially, on days when you feel like giving up! Remember, forming a new habit takes time, practice and repetition, so don't get discouraged if progress isn't immediate.
So, who doesn’t enjoy a reward?! Rewarding yourself is an important part of developing any kind of habit, big or small. Reward yourself for sticking with something difficult like training for a marathon, accomplishing something new or moving outside your comfort zone, like taking a ballet class. Rewards will help motivate you to keep going! Whether it's treating yourself to something special or setting aside time for self-care activities like a massage or something simple as taking time to read a book. Find that something to motivate you and remember to reward yourself when possible.
Off You Go:
Developing good habits doesn't have to be hard – it just takes time and patience! With these tips in mind, set realistic goals, be consistent with your efforts, and reward yourself and you’ll be well on your way towards achieving good habits that stick. To learn more about creating and sustaining habits, here are a few of my favorite books:
Atomic Habits by James Clear
One Small Step Can Change Your Life by Robert Maurer, PhD