Why is it Hard to Form Good Habits?

Commitment © by quinn.anya

It is hard to form good habits and we all struggle with this. I am in the process of developing good healthy habits to form a good foundation for my life. I have learned that it takes self-discipline and commitment to do it.

To make a good habit you have to feel a desire to make this habit and first of all you have to get the right attitude and mindset. You have to make the habit twice; first in your mind and then in action. If you cannot imagine yourself doing this healthy habit then you will not succeed in action.

Start with your mind

Stephen Covey suggests, in his book about 7 habits to be effective, that you start with your mind by envisioning your goal and then try to understand why you want to reach this goal. Then you can start forming your new habit in action.

Commitment

The other great parameter that determines your success in forming a good habit is your commitment to the task. You have to be 100 % committed and prepare for keeping that commitment for six to eight months!

A few weeks ago I decided that I would make some major changes in my habits and I am totally committed to them. First task was getting up at 6.30am every day. I have done that for three weeks now. It is far from a habit but it is getting easier and easier every day. Next task was to implement a nap when possible between 1pm and 3pm. I have done that for two weeks now and last week I started exercising every day for at least 30 minutes.

The only way I will succeed is by self-discipline and commitment (– and of course a great deal of understanding from my girlfriend.)

Resources

I found this great article that suggests you create a timeline to envision your goals. It is quite simple and yet effective. [Create a Timeline to Better Envision Your Goals]

Top 5 Bad Habits

isolation © by Dawn Ashley

1. Watching too much television is bad for your physical health. Especially your heart and back suffers from sitting in front of the television, but also you metal health suffers and your IQ drops.

2. Not responding to stress is a common and very bad habit. Typical stress symptoms are feeling irritable, memory problems, frustration, muscle tension and headaches. The list is very long and it is important to act immediately on these symptoms; you can see an elaborated list at Changing Minds.

3. Having a negative attitude will isolate you hinder you from reaching your goals. In general it is a good idea to acknowledge the things you don’t like and then focus on the positive instead. I.e. your dreams, your visions and the things you want instead of what makes you unhappy.

4. Perfectionism is definitely one of the worst habits and it kills creativity. If you don’t take action and keep collecting information or fiddling then you will never get things done; you won’t make any changes and never get to your goals and dreams. Don’t fiddle – take action and remember that you learn from failure.

5. Being isolated is not good for your health and it will not help you get anywhere. You need other people to get success in this world. If you tend to isolate yourself then you need to work on you social skills and save some money on psychologist sessions.

The Origin of Habit

Parisian Love Lock © by thezartorialist.com

Why should you be interested in the origin of the word habit? Because I believe that the language we use creates the reality we live in and by examining history we can better understand the components of a concept or an idea. In the case of habits I will show some important key elements of the concept. E.g. emotion is a core concept of habits; emotions are essential to the existence of a habit.

It is both rewarding and interesting to study history to understand better and I have made some research on the word “habit”. I have tracked the word back to the Indo-European word “ghabh” meaning to grab or to take. Indo-European is the language family most European languages come from and English follows a branch of the family consisting of Germanic, West Germanic, Anglo-Frisian and Anglic.

“Habit” comes from Indo-European but it did not develop into the Germanic branch of languages; it was adopted from French monks about year 1300. The synonym “wonts” is not used much anymore but that is the original word for the meaning “habit” has today.

“Wonts” comes from the Indo-European word “wen-“ that means love, want or win. If you study the words that come from “wen-“ you will discover that they all have emotions in common. They express something that we have a strong feeling for; something we love or something we have a strong desire to own.

Thus, a habit is connected to words like love, want, take and win. They are all strong words that express emotion, desire, action and vision. Most of the models and tools that are developed to assist you getting success in life encompass desire, action and vision, but very often they miss out emotions.

A Simple Life Strategy

writing in the journal © by redcargurl

I talked to a friend yesterday and she is looking for a job and has been looking for a while. I asked her what kind of job she is looking for and she answered – something in marketing. I then asked her what position wanted and she answered – any position! When I asked her what industry she wanted to work in she answered – that doesn’t matter, only not finance!

If you recognise this situation then it is time for you to figure out what you want, because if you do not know what you want then how will you ask for it? You have to know exactly what you want in life. If you want a job you have to know exactly what position you want, what company you want to work for etc. In life you have to be very specific about what you want and how to get it.

A strategy is a plan of action to reach your goals. Your life strategy is a plan of action that includes your resources and how you are going to use these resources to reach you goals in life. It is a huge project, life long, to create and carry out a strategy to your goals but the strategy itself has some simple core items.

  1. Clarity. What exactly do you want in life? That is your goals.
  2. Resources. Know your resources; they are your means to reach your goals.
  3. Planning. How are you going to use your resources to reach your goals?
  4. Action. Roll up your sleeves and get down to it!

Simple example: You are thirsty. Before you drink you have to figure out what you want to drink and how to get it. You decide that you want water. You are at the office waiting for an important phone call; you cannot leave your desk. What are your resources? There is a water cooler next door; you have an empty bottle and three colleagues. You know one of them frequently goes next door to get printouts. Now you make a plan; next time your colleague is going to get a printout you will ask him to fill your bottle and say thank you for helping you out. Take action!

If you are 100 % clear about what you want in a specific situation and you know your resources and how to get it, then I can guarantee that you will get it! That goes for anything you want in life.

Life Is About Making Choices

Life Is About Learning to Dance in the Rain © by FindYourSearch

It is easy to make a choice. What stops people from making a choice, is that they are afraid of the outcome of that specific choice. It is the fear of uncertainty that stops people from making a choice. But you cannot escape the fact that you have to make choices to live your life; if you avoid making decisions your life will become very difficult.

If you are unhappy, then choose to be happy; if you want to be rich, then choose to be rich; if you want a partner, then choose to get one; if you want to loose weight then, choose to loose weight. It sounds so easy to do, does it not? Let me reveal a secret for you that have been kept secret for you until today: It is that easy! Once you realise how easy it is you will wonder why you have not done this before.

If you want something to happen in your life then you have to do something to make it happen. Action involves decisions; you need to decide what to do to take action and make things happen. Your future depends on the choices you make and if you do not make any choices then you do not have a future.

You get exactly what you ask for; and if all you ask for is fear of choosing then all you will get is stagnation and fear. But I have I solution to your problem of fear: – choose not to be afraid. Choose to trust that your choice is a good one. The choices you make are based on what you feel is good for you and what you want in the future. If you let anyone else decide what is good for you, then you will never get what you want from life. Then you would be living someone else’s life and not your own life.

When you have made a choice making something happen you will know deep down inside yourself that you will succeed. When you have made a specific choice you will be focused and you will do what it takes to carry out that decision. When you have done it you will feel a rush because you have overcome fear and you experienced the intoxicating feeling doing it.

Now go face your fears and make those choices to create your future!