How to form a new habit? Step by Step Guide

People with good habits rarely need to resist the temptation to laze on the couch, order greasy takeout, procrastinate on assignments, or watch one more viral video before dashing out the door. That’s because autopilot takes over, eliminating temptation from the equation. Having established good habits, little to no willpower is required to choose wisely.

How to form a new habit?

Want to form a new habit? Do this…

1. Start small

  • Focus on changing 1 habit at a time.
  • This will prevent you from burning out and giving up.
  • Once the 1 habit becomes 2nd nature, move onto another.

2. Make the good choice easy

  • Humans are lazy.
  • We’re wired to look for the path of least resistance.
  • So, ask yourself how you can make the new habit easy to do.

Want to drink more water?

Carry a water bottle with you everywhere.

Want to exercise regularly?

Pick a gym that’s near your house.

Want to eat healthy?

Meal prep your food once a week.

3. Make the bad choice hard

  • Adopting a new habit often requires replacing an old one.
  • To make the transition easy, make the old habit difficult.
  • If you struggle with snacking, stop buying them at the store.
  • Replace them with healthier alternatives (smart pop popcorn and Halo Tops are a Godsend).
  • If you struggle to stay off social media, use an app blocker like ColdTurkey or Freedom.
  • If you struggle with video games, keep your gaming setup at a friend's house and only pick it up on weekends.
  • Simply making it difficult will make breaking the habit 10x easier.

4. Adopt a new identity

  • One of the most powerful ways to form a new habit is to adopting a new identity.
  • Humans have a strong need to remain consistent with the stories they tell themselves.
  • If you see yourself as a writer, you’re going to write more.
  • If you see yourself as an athlete, you’re going to workout more.
  • It doesn’t become a question of if you feel like doing it, instead, it’s just what you do.
  • Now, I’m not saying look in the mirror and shout affirmations (if that works for you, great).

But you can simply start referring to yourself as the type of person who does the habit you want to adopt:

  • Writer
  • Reader
  • Non-smoker

Over time, your brain will make the connection, and the habit will become 2nd nature.

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