How to Develop Conscious Habits
Created by Dayiana Oballos / Do Indie Blog
“If you believe you can change - if you make it a habit - the change becomes real.” Charles Duhigg
Many of our problems would be resolved if we just formed the right habits and stuck to them. However, we do not bring all of who we are to help us create new habits and we end up abandoning the very habits that we know would make us happier.
As you go about the project of reinventing your life, one key factor is to develop new habits and shed the old ones that no longer serve you. It is difficult to let go of an old habit unless you replace it with a new habit. Get your emotions involved in creating a new habit and you will have a much stronger chance of making that habit fully ingrained in your life. The most important thing in developing a new habit is to be conscious about it. Realize that what you are doing is programming your brain as if you are programming a computer. Repetition is what creates a habit. However, repetition can feel mundane and ineffective. Practice mindfulness as you develop a new habit and understand that it takes your body and mind time to take on this new programing. So, start out slow and in bite sized increments. Be focused on enjoying the new experience. Even when the experience starts feeling repetitive, take the time to connect with the vision of what you intend. As with most things, begin the pursuit of the particular habit with the end in mind. You have heard that it takes 21 days to form a new habit. You have also heard that it may actually take 28 days. However, new research recently published in the European Journal of Social Psychology, details the findings of a study done with 96 people who were interested in forming a new habit each day such as eating a piece of fruit with lunch or doing a 15 minute run each day. Each participant was asked to rate how automatic the activity felt each day and that ranged from “hard not to do” and “done without thinking.” On average, the participants reached a plateau where the habit was automatic after 66 days.
“Cultivate only the habits that you are willing should master you.” Elbert HubbardTherefore, when you are creating a new habit, stick with it, every day if possible, for at least two months or more. Start developing meaningful and mindful rituals that signal certain emotions to your brain. For instance, meditating daily for as little as 15 minutes is proven to have significant impact on your level of stress and coping capacity. Also, be sure to include in your habits play and fun, creative expression and new experiences. We are a product of our thoughts beliefs and emotions. It is important to bring all these three factors into your quest to develop new habits and make the necessary changes. If you take a habit and stay on it for at least two months on a daily basis, at the end of the year you would have acquired six new habits. Here are habits that are life enhancing and will support you in the long term:
Embrace nature. Daily movement or exercise.
Drinking adequate amounts of water daily.
Eating at least one piece of fruit every day.
Daily journaling. Learn more, search new ideas
Eliminating the white stuff from your nourishment.
Eating fresh veggies every day.
Listening to soothing music every day.
Meditating every day.
Daily laughter and playtime.
Reading and absorbing affirmations.
Enjoying your hobby each and every day.
Being more positive in your thinking.
Love the people around you.
We encourage you to only work on one habit at a time for at least thirty days before you add another habit. This way, you get used to the habit. However, remember, stick with each habit for at least sixty days for maximum effect. Great Habits bring great results to your life.
“Everybody wants a happy life and a peaceful mind, but we have to produce peace of mind through our own practice.” Dalai Lama XIV
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