Let’s admit it: we all have bad habits that we know we should take care of. While some habits might require the help of rehabilitation professionals to overcome, like those qualifying as addictions, other habits simply don’t help us to live up to our full potential. This may include spending time doing things that aren’t productive, eating foods that are bad for our bodies, letting in too much negativity and tons of others. However, there are things you can do to slowly but surely change all those small bad habits into stronger, healthier habits. To show you how, here are three tips to take you from harmful to healthy daily habits.
Understand Your Triggers
A lot goes into making something a habit. You usually acquire a habit after doing the same action over and over again. But once you’ve turned that act into a habit, your brain sometimes takes over to the point where you don’t even recognize making a conscious decision to participate in that habit anymore.
To combat against this, Adam Dachis, a contributor to LifeHacker, suggests that the first step in breaking a bad habit and adding a good habit is to recognize the triggers of that habit. Triggers for habits usually include things like location, time, emotions, the people around you, or what you did right before the trigger. By understanding what triggers you to indulge your bad habit, you can better know what types of things to avoid in order breaking that habit for good.
Creating healthier habits isn’t all about breaking bad habits; it’s also about instilling good habits. While many people set goals for them to help in leading a healthier, happier life, more often than not, those goals remain unreached. So what can we do to make it easier to reach goals and still have those goals be effective?
According to Lewis Howes, a contributor to Forbes.com, thinking small about your goals is the true secret to having big success. By thinking small, Howes doesn’t mean splitting up your bigger goal into smaller pieces. Thinking small means literally having your goals be those tiny, seemingly insignificant goals that you actually can and will reach. Once you’ve knocked out enough of those smaller goals and built your confidence that you really can reach your goals, it will be much easier to accomplish those bigger goals and habits you have your sights on.
Become More Mindful
When creating habits, whether they are good habits or bad habits, it’s important to do all you can to be in control of those habits. One way to get more control over your habits—and your actions in general—is the practice of mindfulness.
According to Elisha Goldstein of Mindful.org, being mindful means creating more space between the stimulus and your response. It means giving you time to truly make a choice, not just react. By becoming more mindful, your “habits” will no longer be compulsions; they will be conscious choices and healthy decisions you’re making on a daily basis.
To create healthier habits for yourself, consider using the tips mentioned above. These ideas will help you get out of your own way and quickly become the healthier, happier person you want to be.