In a perfect world, everyone’s habits would be good for them. Everyone would be able to sleep and wake up at the right times, everyone would exercise regularly, and no one would be smoking or consuming highly toxic substances. In the real world, however, there are people who live with habits that do not align with their personal interests or professional goals. If not dealt with, these unproductive and sometimes even life-threatening habits can act as handicaps to accomplishing any major milestones in your career or personal relationships. Here are five ways to nurture beneficial habits in yourself:
Know Which Habits to Target
From brushing their teeth in the morning to switching on the television right after coming home from work, these regular things that you do are all habits that either helps you or weigh you down. But blindly changing the repetitive everyday actions that drive your life on autopilot can create more harm and conflict than good and order. It’s important to define which habits to target for a complete overhaul or a slight adjustment. For instance, you might find that running for half an hour in the morning tends to make you nauseated or fatigued by lunchtime. Rather than not exercising at all, adjusting what time or eating something before your run can be done to improve on the habit.
Tell Others What You Plan on Doing
The circle of people you are regularly exposed to can have a strong impact on how easily you can implement a new action and quickly turn it into a habit. If your family members, housemates, friends, and coworkers don’t know what habits you are trying to form or change, they can say or do things that make it difficult for you to stay on course. For instance, telling your work buddies that you are cutting back on alcohol will lessen the number of invites you get after work. Telling your roommates that you’re switching to a low-carb diet may lead to fewer carb items left in the communal fridge.
Be Prepared For Internal Struggles
Not having any snacks to munch on while working from home, for instance, can force you to resort to ordering in, which may conflict with any personal finance habits that you have been attempting to establish. In some cases, even the slightest sensation or minor detail or issue can divert your attention and efforts from the habit you are trying to instill or change. Invest in quality products that can quickly and specifically address whatever issue you stumble upon. For instance, women suffering from genital dryness should buy Creme De La Femme to quickly soothe itching so they can continue on with their work.
Leave Constant Reminders
Constant reminders as to why you are changing or adding a new habit may prove useful in times when you are running out of motivation to stick to the plan. Habits that directly conflict with what you want to do can subconsciously burn a lot of mental energy. If you are tempted to eat an unhealthy food item that you’ve successfully avoided for the past week, remind yourself why you decided to scratch that food item from your diet in the first place, whether it’s because of the steep cost per unit or the variety of health risks that it brings.
Make the Transition a Positive Experience
Your mind and body are more likely to accept a new habit if it inspires positive emotions. Anytime the brain experiences something pleasurable, it releases a chemical called Dopamine. This is what makes you feel good on the outside. This same mechanism is likely what also caused you to adopt habits that were inherently pleasurable as an activity but has grave consequences in your productivity or health, such as video game addiction or drug abuse. For instance, when trying to enforce the habit of regular exercise, you could make it fun by creating a “Running” playlist to run to or asking a close friend to join you for some social time.
As the wise say, habits shape one’s life. The frequency and magnitude of your successes and failures are directly tied to the set of habits that constitute your day-to-day routine. Use the tips aforementioned in this article to nurture the right set of habits without being met with internal or external conflict.