7 Easy Steps to Developing a Healthy Habit

1. Clearly decide on a habit you want to create

If you want something to become a habit for you, there can be no fluctuation. Basically, you can’t change your habit half way through. Take a minute, and think about your own limits and expectations. Make sure your habit is reachable but also fulfilling. A habit I am using these steps for right now to create is I want to get up at 6 a.m. I think this will take me a week to make a habit, and it will definitely be hard. I know this habit is right for me because I have thought about how much more time I would have to be productive. Think of what you are getting out of your habit.

2. Never allow exceptions

No cheat days, no breaks. The goal with a habit is that you won’t want a cheat day or a break. So taking a cheat day or a break will tell your brain that this is something bad, that you don’t want to do, so it will be way harder to convince your brain to do it on it’s own. Also, taking one cheat day or break will tell YOU that it’s fine to take a break or cheat day, as long as you keep going. Bt you are not creating a habit. You are just getting up at six a.m. They are not the same thing. You want your body to want to wake up at 6 a.m. Or at least expect it.

3. Let others know about your goal, and keep track of it

Tell your friends, tell your family. It’s amazing how much more motivated and determined you will be if you know that people are watching you, to see if you have the willpower to pull through and create that habit you so desperately want. They will keep on track, and will support you. Also, a great place to keep track of your goal or goals is a bullet journal. I have a whole post about how to use one here.

4. Visualize yourself enacting your habit

Visualization is one of the most important tools, ever. Your brain does not know the difference between dreams and reality. If you visualize what you want to happen, there is a way bigger chance of it coming true. For example lets take my habit-in-progress, getting up at six a.m. I am going to relax my body, and imagine getting up at six a.m. I will imagine how it will feel. I will be tired, but excited at all the extra time. I will feel more productive and ready to get things done. I then imagine what I will do with this extra hour. Some yoga, write another post, get some homework done. Visualize all of it, and keep that vision in your head.

5. Create affirmations for your habit

What is an affirmation? An affirmation is a statement, that you repeat over and over until you believe it. For example, an affirmation I repeat every night and morning is, I love my body and my mind. I usually repeat this affirmation around five times. An affirmation for a habit could look like, I am going to wake up right before my alarm clock goes off feeling refreshed. If you make an affirmation for your habit, and repeat it at the optimal times of he day, you will start to see what you say is becoming your reality.

6. Persist until it is automatic

This step is all about dedication, willpower, and discipline. Just keep enacting your habit, and focus on having the thoughts and feelings you would have if you had this habit. Always keep pushing. Find strategies that you can use to create your habit. For example, I have looked up how to wake up earlier, and enacted those tips and strategies. Use outside sources.

7. Reward yourself!

Give yourself a reward for enacting that behavior or habit. When you are giving yourself a reward, you are creating positive connections in your brain with the habit. This is opposite of what happens when you take a break or have a cheat day. You are reinforcing positive connections in your brain with the action, instead of negative ones. You can find many great rewards here.

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