If you are anything like me you probably set goals all of the time, some of them you keep, some of them you never expected to keep and sometimes there is just too many to keep track of. So how does a goal become a habit and how does this habit help you along the way to success.
Beginning to make positive changes within ones life can often be overwhelming, It can create worry and that little voice of self doubt gets an opportunity to creep its way in. For me I often find myself motivated and inspired to create some healthy habits, this lasts a while and then after a short amount of time I allow myself to get tired and forget why I even started.
Going into the new year so many of us set goals and resolutions only to fail them a few hours, days or weeks later. Below I have included my top 12 tips to help you incorporate healthy habits into your lifestyle for good.
1. It isn't always about adding
We do not have to be adding all of the time, sometimes we simply need to remove something. When making goals and creating healthy habits we often believe we should be adding a bunch of new things into our routine. Sometimes it just isn't about what we are doing to better ourselves but rather what we are no longer doing.
A great idea is to release any habitual behaviours that you have picked up along the way that no longer serve you. Instead of exercising more maybe you just need to cut our junk food. Instead being more positive maybe you need to cut out negative thinking patterns and self doubt. Sometimes we do not need more company, more time or more relationships we simply need to cut out the bad ones, focus on being present in the moment and cherishing the time we have.
Before thinking about all healthy habits you need to incorporate have a think about any habits you currently have that can be adapted, removed or changed slightly.
2. Start small
How many times do you write out a huge list of all the thins you need to get done? What about all the things you want to change? How about all those new year resolutions?
Sometimes too much can be a huge hindrance, we we stretch ourselves too far and try to focus on too many things we can often prevent ourselves from doing even one thing well.
Have you ever committed to one to many things and rather than focusing on one of them you just end up completing none. This is what I found myself doing too often. I would give myself a huge list of monthly goals, starting strong I would manage to complete them all everyday for a while but in time some would begin to fall and before long I wouldn't be doing any of them.
It takes time for a habit to form, when you repeat an action over and over again it will soon become effortless to you and this is the goals to forming these healthy habits. The problem with too many habits is the amount of effort they each take, each habit bites into your will power and you may begin to resent doing any of them.
Allow yourself to try one or two habits at a time, focus on that one healthy habit and see it through. This habit is important to you and it should be given the respect it deserves within your life, so start strong and focus on one healthy habit at a time.
3. Make sure your goals are meaningful to you
In order to stick to something it needs to have meaning to you and a real purpose in your life. If you try to force yourself into habits that do not serve you then you may find yourself giving up.
When deciding on a healthy habit try to think about why you are doing it.
What is it that is appealing to you about this habit?
Is there a certain goal you have in mind?
How will this habit bring positive benefits into your life?
Do you have inspiration for this habit?
Is this habit in line with any of your beliefs and morals?
4. Create a vision board
Habits take time and this can make them tough. Over time we can become to feel tired, fed up and sometimes even forget why. As I said before starting with a simple habit that is meaningful to you is a great way to stick to it but how do you stay motivated?
A great way to get stuck in is with a vision board. This can be big, small, minimal, modern, creative, colorful. A vision board represents you and your goals. Think about your healthy habits and why it is meaningful to you. Stick anything that inspires you to complete this goal to your board (You could even write yourself a positive affirmation to help remind you everyday).
5. Break big goals down into smaller goals and plan
Keep it simple, even when we have one goal it can often be a huge goal. Big goals can often seem overwhelming and this makes it tough to keep on track. Think about your goals and begin to break them down.
Do you feel good when you tick of your to do list? Reaching goals can often create feelings of happiness and joy. In order to stick with your healthy habits try to create small goals and why not create a check list. Being able to see you achievements and regularly strive towards a smaller goal can make the bigger goal even easier to achieve.
If you are planning to eat more healthy this can be a huge goal and so confusing, what does eating more healthy even include. Why not simplify it down, set small goals like incorporating a new healthy food into each meal, researching some healthy recipe plans, meal prepping some healthy lunches. Even in simple healthy habits there are small obtainable goals that we can work towards. You wouldn't go into a huge project without any planning so why try to make healthy lifestyle changes without a little bit of planning.
Creating healthy habits and making changes to the way you do things often take up a lot of energy and willpower. In order to stick with your goals you will need to allow yourself some rest and relaxation.
Will power can be harder to find when we are tired and hungry so one of the most important ways to stick to your goals is by looking after yourself.
Make sure that you are eating well, sleeping well and giving yourself some self care time.
7. Reflect often
There is no point smashing your way through goals and healthy habits if you are not learning from them. any of us begin to reflect after things have gone of track, whilst this is good it is important to reflect all of the time.
Remember to set some time aside to reflect about your new healthy habit and goals, you can do this in your mind but i personally like to write down my reflections, this allows it to be released I find that it gives me a fresh start. Having it written down also gives you something to look back on later, it is a great way to look at your progress and remind yourself why you are doing this.
Why did you start this healthy habit?
What is going well?
What needs work?
How are you feeling about it?
What have your learnt so far?
8. Meditate and pay attention to your mind
Life can be busy and a great way to stick with your goals is by looking after your mind. Meditation is a great way to focus your mind and clear away and doubts. Allow meditation to help you realign with your habits and fuel yourself with motivation and inspiration.
Meditating once a day for a few moments is a great way to clear your mind and heal yourself from any negativity and self doubt.
9. Read, learn and grow
This is such an important step for self-development, growing meaning and making a healthy habit into a concrete lifestyle change.
You have a healthy habit in mind and maybe you created a vision board but a great way to stick with your goals is to learn about them. Try to learn about the benefits of this healthy habit, read about ways different aspects of this healthy habit and try to develop a wider view. The more you being to form your own opinions and beliefs about this healthy habit the more likely you will be to stick with it.
There are books about everything! I bet no matter what your healthy habit is there is a book, website or forum out there that you can use.
10. Use others for support, inspiration and accountability
It can be hard to stick to healthy habits when you are doing them alone so a great way to stay motivated is by getting a friend to join you. Try to find someone who has the same goals as you and work together on it. Look for online communities and reach out to others for support and tips along the way.
Having others there with you allows you to have someone for support and motivation, it also gives you a way to stay accountable for you actions.
11. Be easy on yourself
Big changes are hard and the last thing you should be doing is beating yourself up about them. Maybe it is harder than you thought, maybe you made a few mistakes but that is fine.
Don't let yourself get upset and try not to put yourself down. When we begin to think negatively it can put us in a place that is difficult to get out of and this can lead our healthy habits to stop altogether.
Instead of getting upset allow yourself to accept the challenge, know that everyone struggle and forget about any mishaps. Move forward with the same motivation that you has at the start and keep going!
12. Reward yourself
Make sure you reward yourself!
Making changes and creating healthy habits is something to be proud of and it is important to remember how far you have come and reward yourself every step of the way.
What are your healthy habit goals? Let us know in the comments below, share you experiences and help out a fellow reader!