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Simple Ways To Change A Habit For Real


If you have ever trained a kitten to a litterbox, you know a bit about habits. But what most of us do not consider is the sheer weight of the habits that we all carry around and how much of our life is spent following them. Kids, teens, adults, and seniors all spin out habits and then hang onto them for dear life.

If you have ever spent precious morning minutes looking for a preschooler’s favorite stuffed creature that always travels with him, you know habits start early. But whatever age, habits are right there too.

What happens next can be a real drag.

That morning pastry and coffee habit morphs into 10 extra pounds.

That cast in stone route to work gets hit with road work, but we keep right on going and keep on arriving late to work.
Those great black outfits that we have been wearing forever are classics. Right?

We all live in Habitsville, but there may be a way out.

Charles Duhigg, NY Times’ reporter, wrote The “Power of Habit” two years ago and it’s still on the best seller list. Check his philosophy and see if you agree. This could work.

Take three steps to lock in a new habit.

Choose a habit – biking every morning
Choose a cue – leave your biking shoes by the door.
Pick a reward – like a piece of chocolate when you return.

Overtime, when you see the shoes your brain will seek the reward, making it more likely that you will work out. The author suggests sticking these three steps on your fridge, or on your screen.

What could happen next?

Well, I think that is wide open. I have tried lots of incentives with lots of groups for stress, weight, and exercising, but this looks like the one I should try.

If you are currently reading this, think about what you are doing right now and what you will do next. Then think about your whole day and just how much of it follows routines, both good and bad.

Now think about what you want to change.

Pick a few habits that you need to change, would really like to reshape, or absolutely have to change soon. Smoking, weight, too many brews, too much time on social media. Whatever. The list is up to you.

But a habit changer that really worked could change everything.


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Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Keoni Cabral

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