Making Habits Stick For The Long Haul  

Habits make life easier as the essential actions we have to take to have a food, healthier and fulfilled life becomes more automatic. One of the proponents I follow when it comes to habits is James Clear, ultimately known for his atomic habits.

We only have a few more months before the year finally comes to an end, if you are one of those people who have difficulty sticking to their New Year’s Resolutions, then I suggest that you start as early as now, so that when the fireworks pop at midnight on the 31st of December, you have a huge head start to starting the year in a positive note just because you already built healthier habits.

Here are some tips on how to make habits stick:

  • Start small Don’t try to change too much at once. Pick one habit that you want to focus on and start there. Once you’ve mastered that habit, you can move on to another one. For example, start off first with building habits that will give you more energy or live a healthier life.
  • Make it easy. Reduce the friction associated with your new habit. For example, if you want to start exercising in the morning, lay out your workout clothes the night before. Or, if you want to start eating healthier, pack your lunch for work the day before.
  • Be consistent. It takes time to form a new habit. Try to do your new habit every day, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Here are some habits that you have to build on your 30s.
  • Track your progress. This will help you stay motivated and see how far you’ve come. You can use a habit tracker app or simply keep a journal.
  • Reward yourself. When you reach a milestone, reward yourself with something you enjoy. This will help you stay positive and on track.

Here are some additional tips that can help:

  • Make your habit specific. The more specific your habit is, the easier it is to stick to. For example, instead of saying “I want to exercise more,” say “I will go for a 30-minute walk after dinner every day.”
  • Stack your habits. This means linking one habit to another. For example, you could say “After I brush my teeth in the morning, I will do 10 push-ups.”
  • Find a habit buddy. Having someone to support you and hold you accountable can make a big difference. You can find a habit buddy online, through a local community group, or even among your friends and family.  The goal is to find someone who wants to build similar habits as you and can keep you accountable. 
  • Don’t beat yourself up if you slip up. Everyone makes mistakes. If you miss a day or two, don’t give up. Just pick up where you left off and keep going. It’s not the strongest that survives, but the most flexible. Bounce back immediately if you slip a day or two. 

It takes time and effort to form new habits, but it’s definitely possible. By following these tips, you can increase your chances of success regardless of the habit you want to create. 

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