If you are like me, you have a few bad habits. Whether yours is smoking, or cursing, or drinking when you are angry, or devouring a bag of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos during your favorite sit-com, you can change them! Here’s how….
Five quick tips to create a new habit:
1. Set your intention. It takes about 30 days to make something a habit. Set your intention to replace a current bad habit with your new action each day for the next 30 days. For example, instead of saying “What the f***!” … say “What the focus!” (It works for me.) Or when you are mad as hell and heading out for a beer, hit the gym instead. Then put up reminders – i.e. on your phone, in notes to yourself, around your home.
2. Choose just one new habit to focus on. It’s a challenge to focus on more than one. In fact, trying to make a whole lot of changes at once is a great way to sabotage yourself. One a month means a whole lot of change by the end of the year. When you’ve tackled one bad habit, move on to the next.
3. Tell others about the actions you intend to take. The more people you tell, the more committed you’ll be, and the more likely you will be to succeed. You’ll be accountable. If no one knows what you’re trying to do, it’s easier to give up.
4. Acknowledge your progress. Even if you don’t do it perfectly every time, focus on when you do get it right. Cutting out that morning smoke or that bag of Cheetos on Tuesdays counts!
5. Keep track. Put a big smiley face on your calendar each day you take your chosen action. It feels good to succeed – once you start acknowledging the small steps, you ‘ll be less inclined to stumble and revert back to that bad habit.
And, if nothing else, remember…
“What the focus!”