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CHANGING THE NARRATIVE
How many times in your life have you wanted to create a habit that lasts but lose your way after a few days? You may have heard a mix of confusing research- it takes 21 days to create a habit, or even 60 days to create a habit. However, they are actually much quicker to accomplish and surprisingly easy if you have the right elements in place.
How many times in your life have you washed your hair? Made your morning coffee? Or cooked your favourite meal just how you like it?
How did you end up with so many habits if they are so hard to create? The majority of habits are formed unconsciously, without us even thinking twice about it. Of course washing your hair is easier than committing to a daily exercise regime but the fundamentals are the same, these unconscious habits are not so different to the ones you may be trying to implement.
Below are some useful tools when trying to create habits that last a lifetime….
Instead of saying,“I’m going to meditate more”, it is important to be specific. Setting clear goals makes creating habits much easier – “I’m going to meditate 3 times a week, on Mon/Weds/Fri before work, as soon as I’m out of my shower with a 5 minute video from A Body Forever (naturally)”.
Carrying on with the example above, you’re less likely to want to meditate if your space is a mess and uninviting. So ensure your space is neat. Keep your yoga mat out so you have somewhere to gravitate towards. (Here’s a meditation video to get you started!)
Set your yoga mat or meditation cushion to a specific part of your house. Like any routine having things in the same place can make a difference. You will begin to associate this space with the habit you are creating.
The biggest part of creating any habit is doing what you said you would do and making it easy to do it. Once you have set your goal and made it easy for yourself, ensure you do this new habit for a few weeks, notice what happens. You will see what’s working and what isn’t and you can change things accordingly.
Try creating a small calendar near your bed so you can tick off when you complete a task. You may be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is. The hardest part is starting. The next is staying on track. Remember the journey to creating new habits can be a stop start process at times, don’t let this phase you. If you fall off the horse, get back on it. It is all part of the journey.
Most importantly, aside from the above – why do you want to create this habit?
Before you launch into your new regime, take a moment to stop and assess the why. Write this down somewhere you can see it and every time you lose motivation repeat the why back to yourself over and over again. Don’t lose sight of the bigger picture, it may seem hard at times but the regret of not getting back up again will feel harder.
I hope this helps you get started. – Emily @lunacirclewellness