Do you want to cultivate habits but somehow they just can’t seem to last for a long time?
When you looked back on the past you tried to cultivate a new habit. Chances are you will find a pattern:
In the first few weeks you were on fire, you completed what you planned to do perfectly.
The second month you started to cave in and didn’t feel as motivated. But on average, you still completed 75% of the plan.
The third month you felt burnt out, average completion rate plunged all the way to 15%, or less.
So what went wrong? What missing piece you need to add so as to form long term habits?
It was a big pain in the ass for me three years ago. I struggled terribly and was stuck in the vicious cycle. So I’d done a huge amount of trial and errors on myself to find out what are the missing pieces and what I should do to succeed.
Which leads to three steps that I want to share, hopefully this can help you to cultivate long term habits successfully.
1. Choose habits you want to cultivate
And yes I am serious about putting one third of focus on this. Here’s why, most people choose the habit to cultivate not because they think it’s something they want to pursue, but because it’s something they think society thinks they should do.
This is extremely dangerous for you. It’ll be easy to give up and waste your time at the end because it’s not you who thinks those habits are important but someone else who puts expectations on you.
It doesn’t matter what society thinks of you. What really matters is what you want and what person you do you want to present yourself to others.
I mean, what’s the meaning of living your life if you can’t be the best of yourself and always has to listen to what others think you should do or to obey “social norms”?
Listen to your thoughts from your deep heart and really think for yourself(not your partner, not your parents, not the society), what habit do you want to cultivate.
If you hear someone go climbing Mt. Everest but he’s never climbed other mountain before, what would you think?
Crazy, idiot, insane, lose his mind, don’t want to live or else. It’s just not a wise choice, isn’t it?
Yet, the majority of people are doing it when it comes to forming a habit. Forming a new habit takes time. And it all starts from smaller steps.
By setting smaller steps, the resistance to take action is low. Meaning, the less chance you quit. The worst thing we can do is give up. So bear in mind that the ultimate success comes from building small actions consistently.
If you cultivate a habit of walking 10 more minutes a day, although it seems little, but if you do it everyday for a couple of months and then years, your weight will decrease by the amount that’s wayyy more than what you planned…and effortlessly.
Because it’s already a habit. Something you do everyday without noticing. Just like you feel no pain when brushing your teeth everyday because that’s a habit you do everyday.
It’s the small actions you do everyday that create a big change. It’s never about how much you can do in one day.
3. Manufacture the environment for success.
Make yourself publicly accountable for that. Find an accountability partner. Make sure you’re on the right path and have no chance to slack off.
If you think, “ah no I don’t want to do that”. “It looks like an idiot…”, “What if I failed…”…Well, that’s the whole damn point, because if you’re thinking like that, then you’re already planning to give up, so why do you even start in the first place?
Want to lose weight? Register a gym and take time to go. Put your time and money where your mouth is, if you want to do something, back that up with your action.
Manufacture the environment for success so that success is automatic, even if you were to cave in, in your head because you have no choice but to succeed.
When long term habits are formed, success becomes automatic.
What’s the first habit you want to cultivate?