Making A Habit Of It

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“You can’t make yourself feel positive, but you can choose how to act, and if you choose right, it builds your confidence.”
Julien Smith

Are you ready to jump out of the same dull routines and move forward? Before taking action, you must make the firm decision to take action.

Habits are the framework of our lives. Many people try to dramatically change their lives in haste with grand declarations (ie. New Year’s Resolutions), but it does not work because the human brain is not built for instant change. Lasting change happens when your brain’s neural network is rewired, and to do that requires two things: time and consistency.

The far more reliable way to change our life is by changing our habits methodically. Habits are so special because they are mostly automatic and come without resistance. This means we will not need great motivation or willpower anymore for that behavior because it as become our brain’s first preference.

I used to have to get motivated to go to the gym or force myself there, but now I go because it would feel strange not to go. If you have been trying to work out consistently for years, you might be thinking, “good for you, but it does not work for me.” But what if I told you I got to this point easily? What if I told it I started by doing 5 minutes a day?

For a few months, I did at least 5 minutes. Over time, my neural pathways changed. I had less resistance to exercising, and was able to go to the gym 3 times a week consistently. A year and a half later, I exercise at least 5 times a week and I am in the better shape. It is because I built the exercise habit. I have also created habits this way in daily writing.

Building habits is a strategy…. ‘mini habits‘. A mini habit is an small task that you commit yourself to do every day. One sit-up, one minute of meditation, writing 50 words, or reading two pages in a book. Alone, these quantities seem a waste of time, but when done daily it is the most effective and reliable way to change your mind, your habits, and your life.

The power of a mini habit is that your daily requirement is low enough that you can do it even when you do not feel like doing anything; you can meet your target on even the bad days.

Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going. When your small action becomes a habit, everything gets easier; you begin to coast through these behaviours you once had to have to push yourself to do.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.”
Aristotle

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