So you want to create some new and good habits in your life, but you know this is no easy feat. Your goal, of course, is to internalize the new habit so that in time, you won’t have to think about doing it anymore. The habit will just become, well, habit!
Below, some hacks to helping you on the path:
Establish habits to facilitate your habits.
Sometimes we forget to do that new thing we were trying. Maybe we forget that we’re supposed to be having eggs for breakfast instead of a stack of waffles. To make this reality, you’ve got to start with eggs. So if you’re not in the habit of making a grocery list, maybe now is the time to get that habit going in tandem with the other one.
Become a Keeper of Lists.
Most HSP’s (highly successful people) make checklists or to-do lists to remind them of what they set out to accomplish. If you want to spend more time doing extra-curriculars with your kids, then make a list of possible activities to explore together. Check them off after you sign up.
Schedule it in.
Cement your habits into your routine by using a good-old-fashioned planner. We just talked about setting up activities. The next step is penciling them in on the calendar, then attending on time.
Hold yourself accountable via family and friends.
We all have people in our corner who will cheer us on, remind us of what we set out to do, and call us out if we don’t do it. So make your intended goals public, and let everyone know what you’ve committed to. You can even share on social media, this way if you don’t stick to your plan then you’ll feel silly because you told everyone.
Piggyback on an existing habit.
Whenever possible, add the new habit to one you already have. For example, if you fix a cup of tea or coffee at 4pm, and you want to get in the habit of taking a daily walk, make the new ritual to go for your walk and then come back and enjoy your tea.
It’s much easier to amend an existing habit or ritual than to create an entirely new one.
Exercise a penalty.
Here’s a fun idea. Impose a fine on yourself whenever you fail to live up to your goal. For example, if you’ve committed to posting an article on your blog every night but you skip one, then put $1 in a jar as a penalty for not sticking to your commitment. You can even decide to donate the money to a worthy cause. This way, even if you fall back on your promises to yourself, you’re still doing good.
Got a friend who’s also in the self improvement mindset? Talk to him or her about setting goals and creating habits together. You could end up with a fitness partner, a business partner, or some other kind of partner, to hold each other accountable and have fun achieving together.
Make it a group thing.
If one accountability partner is good, a whole group is even better. And they don’t even need to be local. Find a supportive group online and challenge each other to stick to your new habit for the next 30 days or so. Not wanting to be the first one to give up will keep all of you going until you establish that new habit.
Try the above methods for hacking your way to new and better habits. In time, the ones that work for you will gradually lead to the formation of habits, at which time you’ll no longer need the hacks!
Think you can hack it?