• Eve Arnold

How to Build a Habit – The Simple Way

How to build a habit the simple way. We all want to be better. Better writers, better listeners, better looking, better at time management. Being better is an ongoing quest between ourselves and well, ourselves.

There is never really an end goal — most of the time we’re just fed up with being fat, lazy, insert anything that pisses you off about yourself, so we create a goal.We create a wonderfully worded goal, as if by doing so, we’re half way to solving our problems. But we’re not. Spoiler alert. Just setting a goal is getting you nowhere.

Where to Look

You need to look at your systems and processes that surround your goals. More specifically you need to look at your habits. How to build a habit starts with understanding what habits we have. Let’s talk about examples because it makes it easier for me to explain and you to read. So, lets pretend I’ve got a goal of going to the gym twice a week, because I want to get fit and healthier… the most classic goal of them all, fitness. So I tell myself, hey Eve, by the end of next month I want to have gone to the gym twelve times. And that’s the end of my goal setting thoughts around going to the gym.

Spoiler… again. It. Won’t. Work.

Easy – How to Build a Habit

If I’m sure about going to the gym twice a week, and I’m not, but let us pretend I am. Then I need to make it easy for myself. I need to set small goals that will help me get to the bigger goal — so if I want to end up going to the gym twice a week and currently I go zero, and I’ve been at a zero my whole life… it’s hardly likely I’m going to increase my gym activity by 200% in one fell swoop. Let’s be practical. If I want to get to twice a week, I need to start with getting up before work at a reasonable enough time to go to the gym and back. I probably want to get used to the idea of some light exercise prior to upping the game so steeply.

So what I might do is say ‘Hey Eve’ (I always talk to myself) why don’t we start with just one week, getting up at 6am once and going for a little walk around the block… just once. Next week the goal might be that again and then the following week I might try twice a week. Microsteps get you closer to the goal but it seems less daunting and you are creating valuable habits that will help you in the long run.

This isn’t a sprint it’s a marathon, whatever your habits now they will help you create a system to optimise your life. The steps can be small — you’ve got time.Make sure the steps are small, the goals are clear and it’s easy to do — if you’ve got to walk round the block, take a coffee and listen to a podcast you love.

Originally published at https://www.careerhealth.info on February 22, 2020.

#Happiness #HabitBuilding #SelfImprovement #SelfDevelopment #Habits

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