We are what we do. By this, I mean that our habits are the sum of our character. Daily habits are what make us who we are. They shape our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. These habits determine if we feel happy or sad, excited or bored. Bad habits can be a huge weight on us and hold us back from living the life we want to live. That’s why it’s so important for us to look at what we’re doing and figure out how we can change it so that it helps us grow and move forward in life. Here, is how good habits can change your life:
Why do Habits Matter?
How can habits change our life? Well, they can make us feel better or worse. For example, the night before I made this discovery, I was in a rut of a long bout of being very sad. Most of the time I’d get lost in my own thoughts of what I was going to do with my life and how I was going to get there. I had no ambition or drive to move forward with my life and felt lost. When I made the change to choose a better habit to move forward with, things started to click in my brain. I was able to take action and do the things that I needed to do in my life. Then, I began to see the changes in my life, the way I felt, and my overall attitude. I started to love myself, and the things that I do in my life. I felt more excited about the things I’m doing and became more motivated to make more of myself.
How Habits Shape Our Thoughts, Emotions, and Behaviors
Every single day, the habits we create and the behavior we exhibit become our character. We form habits simply because they are convenient. For example, when we get up in the morning, we have to go to the bathroom, brush our teeth, and put on clothes. But, when these habits come our way, we get angry or frustrated and they become habits that hold us back from being our most powerful selves. When we decide to get off of the treadmill or take a shower instead of showering straight away, we form new habits that benefit us instead of holding us back.
In other words, good habits give us the ability to improve our lives, improve the way we think, feel, and act. We often let our habits control us, but that’s not always the best thing for us. When we engage in bad habits, we suffer.
The Power of Habits
The human mind is a very powerful thing. Research has shown that the brain is capable of doing thousands of complex things at the same time. When we use that brain, we’re capable of performing multiple tasks at the same time. While we’re performing these tasks, our mind is also thinking about the task. These tasks come together to produce the final outcome. They are like ripples in a pond. As soon as one ripple enters, it causes another ripple to enter to create a continuous movement.
Likewise, when we use our minds, we perform multiple tasks at the same time. We can think about what we want to do. We can plan what we’re going to do. We can actually visualize the steps to do what we want to do. We can also know the skills and behaviors we need to do what we want to do.
The Importance of Habit in Self-Improvement
Our habits are the building blocks of our character. That’s why, although they can be changed, it takes a lot of practice and hard work to change the habits we are currently living by. One of the reasons why it takes a long time for most people to change their habits is because of the lack of consistency. A habit is simply an action that you repeat, like brushing your teeth or waking up. If you want to change something in your life, you need to do it consistently.
So, what does this mean?
It means that if you want to change your habits, you need to make an effort every day to change them, at least in part, and add a new habit. It also means that you have to make an effort to develop new habits. Start by setting a goal for yourself that you want to achieve.
How to Create Good Habits
Change is hard, but creating good habits will not be hard at all. The following are five steps to forming excellent habits:
1. Identify the habits you want to create
Oftentimes, we think we want to make a change but we’re not sure exactly what that change is or how to get started. The key to building good habits is to understand your needs. What do you need to be happier and more fulfilled? What actions do you need to take to create that change?
I like to work on creating habits in these 5 areas:
Here are some quick tips to help you get started:
Create a list of your habits and where they need to be improved. I like to create an inventory list where I rank each habit and how important it is to my life. You could do the same.
Good habits are the part of your life that drives your progress. Without them, you may continue to grow, but you will never feel the joy of progress that other people do.
“Every habit has two components: a cue and a routine. The cue is how and when you do it. The routine is how and when you think about doing it. By reinforcing positive behaviors, habits that make you feel good will be reinforced. Once this happens, you will find that behaviors you didn’t even know you were doing will become second nature.” – James Clear, author of the book “The Four Hour Body”
Our goal is to do our best, and then continue to do our best with each and every situation. A good habit can take you one step further in achieving that goal.
So, start with just one small change, and then slowly add more and more.