As we enter into this New Year, are you hoping to shift a habit or implement a new one? Some people get turned off by the idea of a New Year Resolution, trust me, I get it. I’ve been victim to my own over-zealous goals only to stumble and fall a few weeks later. However, I have also been the successor of my own over-zealous goals while stumbling and getting back up along the way. It’s not always pretty. There isn’t only one path. There will be days that are ugly and feel like you’re trudging through mud. And there will be days that you wonder how and when you got so damn strong. This isn’t about big goals, this is about shifting a small habit or implementing a new, small habit; one small change can make a massive impact. To start a new habit, it will take consistency, grit and determination. So, let’s get started!
Let’s say the new habit you want to start is drinking 8 oz. of water every morning.
Here is my recommendations when it comes to setting the habit:
Identify: The habit you want to implement and the reason you want to do it. It isn’t enough to choose a new habit or to get rid of an old one, you have to identify the reason why you want it. I want to drink 8 oz. of water every morning because it will help to re-hydrate my body which is good for my health. I want to drink 8 oz. of water every morning before anything else because it is good for my health and my health is important to me.
Plan: Now that you have identified your habit, plan how to implement it. When you are creating a new habit, a way to guarantee you will accomplish it every time is to attach it to an already existing habit. If I want to drink water every morning, I must do it before I pour my coffee, which is something I do EVERY morning. My plan is to drink 8 oz of water every morning BEFORE my coffee.
Set-Up: The habit is to drink 8 oz. of water first thing in the morning. The plan is to do it before I pour my coffee. The set-up is about ease of execution. Although grabbing a glass from the cupboard seems like a simple thing, if I am in a sleepy-daze and the set-up/cue is not within my line of sight, I will likely revert back to the habit of starting my day with coffee. Therefore, the set-up for this specific habit would be an empty glass right in front of the coffee pot. This will act not only as a cue, but also a pattern interrupt with it being in the way of the handle of the coffee pot.
Execute: As the Nike slogan goes, just do it. Put the necessary things in place to optimize your success, remember your deeper reason as to why you want this habit and use that to reach for the glass and habit every single day.
One small change can make a massive impact, you may not see it in the days but you will see it in the months and years.
Trust me, you will not regret it and like always, you are worth it.