You are in control of how you live your life.
Does this light you up or fill you with fear?
News flash: life's possibilities are absolutely endless and you can create direction for a lot of areas of your lifestyle.
Actions, in particular the small ones, can build upon each other into bigger results. And as long as you continue trying your best everyday it is possible to achieve the changes you want in your life.
There are 9 habits, that when done consistently, will change your life.
First, let's explore the kind of habits that work to create big changes.
What Kind Of Habits Change Your Life?
Habits that will change your life must include routines based on activities that set you up for success like anchor habits. Let me explain.
Anchor habits are when you establish new routines by anchoring them to existing ones.
Here's an example of an anchor habit:
Put exercise clothes on your bathroom counter each night before you brush your teeth. If you do this then every morning you'll see the clothes as a reminder to exercise every morning.
The anchor habit is putting clothes by your bed the night before and the existing habit is the nighttime routine.
Small Steps Are Best
But you know what else? You form new patterns of behavior when building routines. By breaking down actions into small steps you're creating less decisions you have to make each day.
However, be mindful here. Don't add too many steps at once because you'll risk energy fatigue.
Each step you add requires energy and focus. Control your energy levels by gradually incorporating new, small steps to achieve a consistent habit.
How Long Does Habit Building Take?
Habits can take as long as 21 to 60 days to become a consistent part of your routine. Remember, you are unique and so will the time it takes you to build a new habit.
Stop worrying about how long it will take to make a habit stick. Instead, focus on things that will help you grow into sticking the habit. Let's dig deeper.
Reward Your Hard Work
For starters, highlighting your efforts with a reward reinforces good habits.
So, the morning yoga example from above can include a reward. How? A perk for consistently stretching could be a new pair of yoga leggings.
Here are the nine, simple habits you can start doing for personal growth.
1. Use The 80/20 Rule
Also known as the Pareto rule. Joseph M. Juran was first to point out this universal principle. Juran applied the 80/20 idea to business management and named it after Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto.
Pareto was a philosopher, economists, political scientist, and sociologist. He observed in 1800s Italy that 80% of the land was owned by only 20% of the population.
This observation of patterns works for almost anything. The cool thing is you can use the 80/20 rule to change your life by doing activities that produce the greatest results.
To give you an idea, focus on completing 3 important to-do list items instead of trying do the whole list.
The percentages may not always be exact but the core idea stays the same: 80% of your results comes from 20% of work.
2. Create A Morning Routine
Morning routines empower your day. Drinking water as soon as you wake up is a powerful health tool. Water hydrates your body and refreshes your organs and helps start your day in a healthy way.
As your drink, take time to reflect and be grateful for the parts going right in your life. Gratitude creates a positive way to start the day.
Don't check your cell phone while you're drinking water. Taking a gratitude moment and avoiding the mobile phone means you're in control of your day starts.
3. Make Exercise A Priority
Just like drinking water, exercise offers immediate health benefits. Physical activity positively affects all areas of our lifestyle. Exercise releases serotonin and endorphins that reduce stress (yay!).
When you get moving it boosts your mood and productivity levels too. Fitness is a gateway to achieving other goals. Kind of like one success creates room for more success.
4. Control Your Time
You must first take control of your time. If you don't, others will do it for you.
Sometimes you have to say no to things that don’t serve you. Time is precious so scrutinize your priorities. Make a plan for what you'll say yes (and no) to and reap the benefits of mastering your time.
A great strategy is working in batches or "batch working". Separate your tasks into categories and set a timer. Once your dedicated time is up, take a break or move onto the next task.
5. Read A Lot
Take the time to read every day.
Fifteen minutes per day will grow your world significantly. For perspective, if you read for 15 minutes every day by the end of the week, you'll have read for one hour and fifteen minutes.
Exposure to new ideas, concepts, and methods outside of your own will broaden your knowledge base.
With more knowledge, you can solve problems better and learn new things easier.
6. Write It Down
I’ve talked about writing thoughts down before because it offers immediate progress toward achieving goals.
Writing down your ideas increases your ability to remember topics. Motivation also increases because you have a visual reminder.
I keep repeating this concept but when you direct energy toward goals, chances of success increase. A report published by Science Daily explains that handwriting notes onto paper “…strengthens the learning process…”.
Embrace using a journal or a notepad. Write down your goals and track your progress.
7. Manage Your Emotions
Controlling your emotions influences how effectively you work through any circumstance. Managing your feelings is like emotional fitness. With practice, you can learn how to effectively gauge the flow of energy toward your personal and professional situations.
Developing spiritual growth, regardless of religion, is a powerful habit. At the core it's an exercise in reflection, consideration of one's actions (good and bad), focused energy, and belief in a higher power.
Spirituality encourages us to feel. It restores the balance of feeling versus thinking.
9. Create Nightly Rituals
Nighttime rituals are as important as the morning ones. Without the foundation of an evening routine you can’t thrive in the morning. Here are five easy ways to establish a nighttime ritual:
- Soak in a warm bath
- Pack your gym clothes
- Prepare your breakfast or lunch for the next day
- Review tomorrow’s goals
- Get enough rest
Let's review the simple but life-changing habits:
- 80/20 rule
- Morning routine
- Control your time
- Reading books
- Write it down
- Manage emotions
- Nighttime rituals
Habits become habits through repetition but building them won’t always be perfect. That's okay.
Give yourself room for mistakes. Follow the path that works best for you because all of these steps are adjustable then go read 7 Ways I Show Up For Myself (and How You Can Too).Xoxo,