Maintaining good habits takes more effort than we imagine because, unlike bad habits, good ones require a lot of hard work and dedication.
Here are 6 tips for how to cultivate good habits without running the risk of breaking them every time.
1. Know why you want to cultivate this habit and how it will benefit you
If you don’t have a particular reason, it’s not going to happen. Identify the reasons why you want to develop the habit. Think about what you will achieve by making it a part of your life.
2. Do it for only 21 days
Thinking about developing a lifetime habit sounds overwhelming. But what if we tried it only for 21 days? 21 days is the time it takes to make or break a new habit. Once it’s successfully maintained at the end of the 21-day period, it is easier to continue to do it.
3. Make time for the new habit in your schedule
If the habit does not appear in your timetable, you are likely to leave it as the last thing to do. But if it’s on your schedule, you’ll be reminded about it every time you see the calendar, and you’ll also know that you should not schedule other activities during that time.
4. Identify reinforcing habits
Most habits are interlinked. For example, sleeping early and waking early are obviously related. So if you want to maintain a new habit, identify the other habits that are closely related to it and remove the habits that don’t help you.
5. Preempt possible problems
It’s normal to encounter difficulties and obstacles when you try to cultivate a new habit. A family reunion when you just started a diet; a few days of rain when you just started your daily exercise routine outdoors. The key is to get ahead of the problems and find a solution beforehand so you know what to do when the obstacles appear.
6. Track your habits
Keeping track of your habits will motivate you to move forward since it’s a form of accountability to yourself. Track new habits through a 21-day period. Once the habit is completed during the day, put a checkmark beside it. If you skipped it, put a cross. Before you know it, your habits will be integrated into your daily routine.