The greatest threat to success is not failure, it’s boredom. Most people are looking for the quick fixes, the easy checkmarks, the cool hacks. Those things may get you temporary success quickly, which creates an endless damaging cycle of always looking for the “next” thing. Don’t like your coach? find a new one, don’t like your diet? try a different one. Don’t like your program after a week? Find a better one. The problem with always chasing the newest and best thing is you never stay long enough to build new habits and make real lasting changes. I get it, new things are exciting, habits lose their attractiveness fast, especially because new habits have a lag time. Most habits will not produce results instantly. Which is a big problem in a culture that wants everything yesterday. Success isn’t a microwave, it's more of a crockpot gig. Sustainable success depends on strong habits, things done consistently over long periods of time until they become automatic. If we don’t learn how to build new habits we are just building a house of cards that will fall apart fast with any disruption. Once things fall apart we are back to our old habits that got us to where we didn’t want to be in the first place and we find ourselves starting over. So when we start down the path to building new habits that will lead us to the outcomes we desire and they become ordinary, know that we will automatically start looking for newness. Fight this urge to find something new, it's a trap. If you want to win the long game, don’t chase shiny objects, stay committed to the process instead.
4 Steps to create a new healthy habit:
Decide what you want, then ask yourself what type of person has those things. Write down things they do. You can also look for people that already have success in that area. Success leaves clues, copy their habits.
- Set yourself up for success
Make your good habits easier to do and your bad habits harder to do. Here’s some ideas to get you started; pick your workout clothes out before you go to bed, meal prep your food for the week, join a gym built around community support, reserve all your classes on Sunday nights or get a water bottle that you love to drink from. For the bad habits that you want to stop try; don’t buy junk food for your house, put time limits on your social media accounts, unplug the TV, put your alarm clock on the other side of the bedroom.
What gets tracked gets done. You may think you are more consistent than you really are, seeing it on paper will help you see the actual patterns you follow. Plus tracking gives you the satisfaction of accomplishing your goal. Tracking fills in the lag time from starting a new habit to seeing progress. As you continue to gain momentum in consistency, you will gain confidence and motivation to keep going.
- Never miss twice
There will be days that do not go your way, especially in the beginning. Don’t lose sight of the journey, just stand back up and try again. Every day you have an opportunity to get better. Learn from your mistakes and keep moving forward. Give yourself some grace. What you do consistently is far more important than what you do every once in a while. If you missed today, start again tomorrow. It's never too late to try again.