1. Start small.
As business writer James Clear puts it, “Start with a habit that’s so easy, you can’t say no.” To form a habit, you need to first choose something that you wouldn’t mind doing consistently over a period of time – then build from there. If you want to build an exercise habit, you can commit to a 2-minute routine every morning; if you want to make a habit of inviting people to business opportunity meetings, commit to calling one person every day.
2. Create behaviour chains.
You could even build from a routine that you have already been performing for a while, and use these environmental “triggers” to help you transition into a new practice with more ease. For example if you want to embrace the vegetarian lifestyle, instead of simply saying you will become a vegetarian, tell yourself, When I go for lunch, I will eat only vegetables. And if you want to build your network of potential downlines, instead of saying you should invite a certain number of people to a business opportunity meeting by the end of the week, tell yourself, As soon as I get home, I will call one person on my list.
3. Understand why.
Know your reasons for wanting to engage in a particular habit and also the barriers that might make it difficult for you to be motivated into keeping your routine. Your reasons for getting into a new habit will be your motivation to keep doing it. Meanwhile, you can plan your new routine in such a way that the barriers you’ve identified won’t have to be present and get in your way.
Take for instance, you want to develop a daily workout regime but can’t seem to stick to it – maybe it’s because you don’t enjoy travelling to the gym and being surrounded by other gym-goers. The solution to this could be eliminating the gym from the equation and sticking to exercising by yourself at home. Likewise, if you want to ensure you make those phone calls and avoid getting too lazy to fish your mobile phone out of your bag, then keep it in your pocket so you are reminded of its presence every time.
4. Keep track of time.
The need to make time for your new routine might be obvious, but it has to be a conscious effort every time. After all, when you start a new habit, you have to fit it in your schedule and part of this process is figuring out which parts of your daily routine will have to be cut down. If you’re going to commit to calling one person to invite to a business opportunity meeting every day, you might have to delay eating dinner by a few minutes.
Set benchmarks for your progress and keep track of them on a calendar. Give yourself a nice guilt-free reward every time you make a milestone. You worked hard to get where you are. Pat yourself on the back and enjoy it.
Photo credit: ACAG English