Your life today is essentially the sum of your habits.
How fit or out of shape are you? A result of your habits.
How happy or unhappy are you? A result of your habits.
How successful or unsuccessful are you? A result of your habits.
What you repeatedly do finally shapes the person you are, the things you believe in, and the personality you portray. But what if you want to improve? What if you want to form new habits? How do you start?
We show you the 3 R’s of habit change:
1. Reminder (the trigger that initiates behavior)
At this stage, it’s not enough to tell your friends and family about your new habit so they’ll remember you. All you have to do is make it a very easy task to do.
For example, if your goal is to increase your level of physical activity, you can start by putting your exercise clothes on hand so that immediately after doing another activity such as bathing, it serves as a reminder and you don’t have a pretext for not exercising.
Design a system to test all your excuses and pretexts, in the end you know yourself better than anyone. You can make a list of the things you do every day without fail such as bathing and use those actions as a reminder of your habit to follow.
2. Routine (the behavior itself, the action it performs)
If you want to start a new habit and start living healthier and happier, then we suggest you start with easy habits. It’s not that we don’t want you to achieve your maximum, but it’s better if you start by focusing on small changes that will soon turn into big achievements.
At first, performance doesn’t matter. Become the kind of person who always sticks to his or her new habit. You can build your habit up to the level you want once the behavior is consistent.
Remember to ask yourself How can I make this new behavior so easy to do that I can’t say no?
3. Reward (the benefit you get from doing the behavior)
It is important that you celebrate, both in life and with your habits.
Since we want you to continue doing things that make you feel good, we suggest that for this stage you reward yourself after doing your habit. For example, if you are working toward a new goal by exercising, try to tell yourself after your routine: “Today was a good day,” “Good work,” “Today I have progressed.
Remember to look for habits that are truly important to you, it is hard to find a reward when you decide to form a habit because someone else thinks it is important.