Friday, August 13, 2010

Developing Good Habits

Habits, good or bad, constitutes our personality and works as our auto-pilot that either moves us towards our goals or keeping us away from them. So it is important that we consciously examine and find out bad habits needed to be change. Little changes, when put on autopilot, can result in an improved quality of life.

One Habit For 30 Days 
Take up a single change that you want to see in yourself and start practicing it daily consciously for 30 days at a stretch. After 30 days you will realize that you no more need to practice the change you want to be because it has now become a habit.

One Habit at a Time 
A month may seem like a long time to focus on only one change. With just one habit change you can focus on making it really stick. Multitasking between three or four often means none become habits.

Use a Trigger 
A trigger is a short ritual you perform before a habit. If you wanted to wake up earlier this might mean jumping out of bed as soon as you hear the sound of your alarm. A trigger helps condition a new pattern more consistently.

Replace Needs
You can’t just pull out habits without replacing the needs they fulfill. Giving up television might mean you need to find a new way to relax, socialize or get information.

Balance Feedback
Carefully measure the feedback of your 30 day trial. If it seems your change creates more pain in your life than joy, it is going to be hard to stick to. Then replace your changes that are fun to follow and support you.

Write down your Commitment
Don’t leave commitments in your brain. Write them on paper and hang it on the opposite wall of your bed. This will keep you committed since it is easy to dismiss a thought, but harder to dismiss a promise printed in front of you. Also make a public commitment to everyone you know that you’re going to stick with it.

Reward Yourself
Offer yourself a reward if you make it a month. Anything that will give you extra pushes to be stick with your goal.

Keep it simple
Changing is only a small process and your body and mind should first get used to the new introduction. Therefore, don’t get too harsh on yourself and keep only one or two rules simple rules and not a dozen rules regarding the new habit. Simple rules will help you create habits, whereas complex rules will just put you in a more complex puzzle.

Consistency Is Key
The point of a habit is that it doesn’t require thought. Make sure that your habit is consistently being followed everyday without fail. This consistent performance will drill in the habit in you instead of multiple habits loosely conditioned.

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