We all know how easy it is to be all gung-ho with grand intentions of healthy habits like drinking more water or exercising three times a week or getting to bed earlier and we ace it for a week and then... Oh that inevitable 'and then' when our grandiose intentions fall wayside to our internal default of doing what is familiar, easy and, yes habitual. Our brain loves familiar and routine. Like a homing pigeon it narrows in on unconscious imprinted patterns. Similar to a GPS it goes where it's been before with ease.
Well YOU can hack this default pattern with the proven practice of HABIT STACKING.
What is this you wonder?
And this is where the power of habit stacking derives it's success. When you attach your new healthy habit to a routine daily habit it becomes easy to adhere to it. The key is to keep it simple. There is much wisdom in this age old adage.
Well consider me suggesting you add a 30 minute workout to your day. You say sure I will do this three times a week and you manage it for a week. Come week two you're extra busy, life has thrown you a few curve balls and you 'just don't have thirty minutes to spare.' You pass the the workout and before you know it, your workouts are lost to the usual, and familiar demands on your time. You feel lousy about this - a failure and may even fall into worse patterns of coping with these feelings than before.
My approach with simple, sustainable Habit Hacking is to keep it simple remember. We love succeeding and I am here to facilitate this. Rather than asking for a 30 minute daily commitment...
- How about if I ask you to drink a glass of water while you wait for your coffee
- What about two minutes of exercise while you brush your teeth?
- Maybe its two minutes of conscious breathing in fresh air when you're letting your four legged loved one outside. Or two minutes of stretching in bed before your feet hit the floor.
These very simple and doable practices, when attached to current habits are easy to sustain. Suddenly we are succeeding with conscious self-care. We feel good about this and these minor mindful practices begin to reap us rewards. Yes they add up and usually two minutes become four and eight and ...
When we feel good doing what we do, we are motivated to keep doing it.
While you may have believed that changes you make need to be significant to make significant improvements in your life keep in mind the potent power in regular consistent practices. Even the smallest trickle of water wears down the hardest stone. How does it do this - consistency. Rather than making high, pie in the sky goals for improved health, if you're the type that defaults to all or nothing make your healthy habit intentions doable so you are managing the all of it. Success is so sexy and so addictive. Set yourself up for this.
Beginning Friday September 23rd I will post weekly One Minute Momen-Teri Tips on how at attach simple and effective practices to your pre-existing habits. I invite you to join me weekly and feel free to invite your community onboard as well. Together we pave our way to improved well-being. Truly our most important commodity is our health. Here's to yours, now and always, all ways.
From the heart - Teri