If you have started reading this post, it may be because you want to add a change of rudder to your life. Or maybe just make some tweaks. Or you have tried to change habits that you have installed in your day to day without the expected success. In short you want to be free.
Whether for one reason or another, I think you’re in the right place.
Sthepen R.Covey in his book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” says:
Habits have a huge gravitational attraction, more than most people understand or admit. To break deep-rooted habitual tendencies such as indecision, impatience, criticism or selfishness, which violate the basic principles of human efficacy, it takes more than a little willpower and some minor changes in our lives. The “take off” requires tremendous effort, but as soon as we let go of the gravitational attraction, our freedom acquires a totally new dimension.
Well, in the post of our freedom and happiness, do you think we are investigating a little more about habits?
I think you will agree with me that all the proposals made by the video will be positive in our day to day, but it is difficult to implement them in our lives.
First the simplest thing is that we know exactly what the habits are, their types, how they behave, etc. You think? Well, let’s go there.
What are habits?
We can say that a habit is the habit or practice acquired by frequency of repetition of an act. Another way of saying it would be all behavior that is repeated in time in a systematic way.
According to research from Duke University, habits make up approximately 40% of our daily behaviors . Woow! How much time conditioned by them Do not you think?
We can say that almost half of our life is formed by behaviors, routines, automatisms, recurrent procedures, methods …
This set of habits participate in an important way in our happiness, in our quality of life. In the success we get in everything we participate in.
What we do repeatedly is creating our personality, our beliefs, values and thoughts. In short, our way of relating to reality.
That is why it is very important to focus attention on the recurrent behaviors that manage our lives. Many are totally unconscious, so it is necessary to observe them and if necessary eliminate or modify them. Or if one is positive for our life, maintain it and reinforce it.
Most of them are easily identifiable, although the problem lies in the difficulty of eliminating some, such as the existing barriers to the incorporation of a new one.
Good habits versus bad habits
The good habits are those that improve our quality of life. They would be those that generate satisfaction and leave a positive residue in our lives. For example, exercise, maintain good hygiene, eat healthily, etc.
Cultivate only those habits you want to dominate your life – E. Hubbard –
On the contrary, bad habits have negative consequences for our lives, being a source of dissatisfaction and often of vices. Some are very harmful and difficult to eliminate. The best example can be watching a lot of television, drinking heavily or smoking.
The ideal would be to work to create positive habits in our life leaving behind bad habits. An example would be to start reading a book instead of sitting down to watch television (For that, what better to do than disappear the control of the TV!)
You must bear in mind that bad habits are always born of stress or boredom. So you already know what to avoid. You must not procrastinate in this aspect, it is of vital importance.
Why is it so complicated to modify bad habits?
Leaving behind a habit takes a lot of effort behind. Do you know that between 80 and 90% of the purposes we make at the beginning of the year are nothing ? That awful! True? It is the routines or behaviors already rooted in our DNA that torpedo us and do not allow us to change bad habits for others more beneficial for our lives.
Therefore, we must do it from within, being fully aware of what we are doing.
Changing habits is a state of consciousness
Life is just a fabric of habits – HF Amiel –
Types of habits
We could say that there are as many habits as raindrops in the universe. Each of the human beings that inhabit this planet has its own habits, but these can be grouped into the following areas:
Physicists All those who, being good or bad, are linked to our body, to the organism. Here for example would be the desire to change habits to lose weight, the creation of a weekly gym routine, the creation of healthy eating habits.
Affective Those connected with our most intimate relationships. Family, friends and couple
Social. They intervene in our interaction with the communities in which we participate.
Morales Linked to our values and beliefs.
Intellectuals Those that involve our intellect.
Why do we fail to eliminate behaviors?
Maybe I could start by telling you that we do not focus on a single goal, but that we diversify into many. We want to change everything at once. Does it sound?
We set too ambitious goals that frustrate us by not getting them.
We do not live in the present , we focus on the result we want to achieve and not on the modification of the behavior to be modified. Meditation is a wonderful tool to learn to enjoy the present, we recommend our basic guide for meditation for beginners . Maybe it will help you!
We make changes in ourselves but we seldom realize that there are also enemies that torpedo us in our environment . For example, if we want to leave tobacco behind, it would not be very convenient for us to accompany our fellow smokers out of the premises while they smoke. Do not you think?
We do not realize that battle to battle we will win wars in our fight against habit.
What responsibility do we have over our habits?
Well, as a Galician would say, it depends. Many of them have been acquired in our childhood without having an idea formed of its consequences. The external environment also influences, that is, our family in a large percentage of “culpability”.
However, according to our years of life, we are the ones who are acquiring control over our decisions, and that is where we can influence the transformation or elimination of those bad habits for life.
How do habits work? The model of the 3 R’s
Habits arise because we have a lazy but intelligent brain . This is always looking for a way to save efforts.
If we let the brain work alone, it will try to transform almost all routine into a habit, because habits allow it to rest more often . This instinct to save energy is a great advantage.
An efficient brain allows us to stop thinking at all times about basic behaviors, such as walking and deciding what we are going to eat, so we can dedicate our mental efforts to other tasks of greater importance.
Habits never get to vanish from our mind at all. They are recorded as grooves in our brain, which is a great advantage. It would be terrible if after each holiday period we had to learn to manage our computer again. Do not you think?
What is the problem? That the brain does not differentiate between good and bad habits. If you have a bad one, it will always be crouching, waiting for the signal and the reward.
The pattern that follows any habit, whether good or bad, is as follows:
Reminder or signal . That which triggers the behavior.
Routine . The behavior in its own, what you do next to the reminder.
Reward . The physical or mental benefit we get from that behavior. This will make us repeat the ritual again and again each time the reminder appears. If this happens many times, we will have acquired a habit.
21 days to change habits: Myth or reality?
How to modify my habits is something that has taken me headlong during the last years of my life.
In the 50s one Maxwell Maltz was the one who indicated that 21 days were needed to create a habit . Apparently it fell short.
According to studies of the European Journal of Social Psychoology we would have to be 2 months so that a change in our behavior is imprinted in our mind, that is to say that what we have to learn is how to change a habit in 66 days .
The truth that these figures are not exact because it depends on each person the time it can take to change a habit. From 18 to 254 days is spoken in the aforementioned study, so if we have to bet on something we must forget about 21 days and look at figures equal to or greater than 66 days.
that is, do not think that it will be a quick thing, you will have to float all your will power and your initiative to break that bad habit or to establish a new one.
The golden rule to change habits
Understanding the functioning mechanism of habits is fundamental to managing them ourselves and not the other way around.
This is the rule:
If we use the same signal and provide the same reward, we can change the routine and change the habit.
improve-habitsAlmost all behaviors can be transformed if the signal and the reward remain the same. that is, it is about changing a negative habit for us for another less harmful, neutral or positive.
For example, in general, a smoker can not stop smoking unless he finds a substitute to use when his tremendous desire for nicotine is activated.
Or if you want to stop watching TV and start playing sports, you will have to be very attentive to the moment when you usually sit down to watch the TV and connect it with the moment of
putting on the shoes.
The hardest time to start playing sports is to put on your shoes. – Share it!
How can we start new habits?
Habits are connected to our identity . So if we want to introduce a good in our life, the first thing we have to do is convince ourselves and believe that change is what we need. When you want to change something important in your life, you may need to ask questions to change your way of thinking , to find new ideas. I leave a post that may interest you: 101 questions to change your life today .
We have to start thinking as the person we want to become . If we want to play sports we should start thinking like sportsmen, believing them with faith, acting as they act, feeding us as they do. When we want to change something, we may need to ask ourselves101 questions to change your life today
From there what we have to do is corner our own enemies so that they do not escape, that is, if we want to play sports we will have to be much more specific, given that sports can be an objective that escapes our hands for lack of concretion.
If we say “I’m going to start running Monday, Wednesday and Friday at four in the afternoon for fifteen minutes, in the next 3 weeks”, the goal will have become a much more concrete and achievable one for you.
We also have to take small steps that allow us to obtain small victories that reinforce our morale to move forward.
Smodify-habitsi in the previous objective of the example we modify the duration of time running and we start the first day for 5 minutes and we add 3 minutes each time we go out to run to stabilize after several starts in the 20 minutes, it will be much easier to obtain small victories . These will take us to our ultimate goal of turning that habit into a lasting one.
I want to remind you that will power works like a muscle. If you use it every day you may get tired, so it is best to train it to be in shape. Your motivation will be the gasoline that will help you start when you are lazy. That way you will not fail when you need it most.CRYSTAL JACKET 1
If we add small percentages to the daily realization of our pilgrimage to change habits we will achieve great advances and our well-being by the absence of frustration will be very high.
A 1% improvement or modification of a daily habit is very much … calculate how much progress you have made in 1 month or 3 months. Does not it seem too little?
It is essential that we bring a calendar, where we can visualize what we have done and what we have left to do … if the objective has been decomposed into several milestones, we will have scored our progress and the objective will seem smaller every time. If we deviate from our goal, we will be able to tame the habit in a much faster and more accurate way. Having a calendar of our journey in changing habits we will achieve that if we skip the plan once, this does not happen again.
For example, running 9 kilometers per week at a rate of 3 kilometers maximum per day means that we have to run 3 days 3 kilometers. It is chopping a harder target into others that are easier to reach. If one day we can not run, we have 4 days to act on. There is no excuse!
Studies indicate that skipping your habit once is not worrisome because it has no impact on your long-term progress. Take off pressure. We are not perfect! If someday you skip your habit, you can ask yourself some questions:
Why have I done it?
What benefit have I obtained?
Do I have to touch up my plan to change habits?
His character is essentially the sum of his habits; It is how you usually act. Rick Warren – Share it!
The importance of being patient to modify habits.
We can all make great progress if we are perseverant and constant . Think that the habits have created grooves in your head which is difficult to leave, for this we have to prepare other grooves with the new habit to be able to circulate through them with guarantees when we change the furrow.
Patience is everything. In itself it is another habit. And it is not easy to achieve because part of the understanding that everything has its time; you can not accelerate the processes of the person and nature because if you try you can generate tension . And it is what we least need.
To have patience we can define what patience is for you, where you need patience to be present or what makes you think that you do not have it, what emotions appear associated with this lack of patience.
It is essential that you specify your times to achieve your goals, in order to avoid frustration. In this way it is possible to recognize one’s own limitations to manage stress and unforeseen events and conquer the desired patience .
I recommend reading techniques and relaxation exercises to live quietly , maybe they will help you in this aspect.
The key habits.
This term was used by Charles Duhigg in his book “The power of habit”. What he indicated is that there are key habits that trigger a torrent of other actions from them.
For example, if you improve your eating habits, it is likely that your physical condition improves because you will have better digestions that will lead to a more restful sleep, greater freshness throughout the day, your smile will appear more frequently, and perhaps you will even begin to Do some sport to feel better.
We all have our key habits, what you have to realize is the question:
What are my key habits?
Working on them is of vital importance in order to take giant steps in the transformation of your life. With that we can detect 1 or 2 and act on them we will realize that they begin to fit and put in place those pieces of the puzzle that is our life.
How to change life habits
Here, what is involved is to modify bad habits, change a behavior, create a methodology that helps us to be freer and happier. It is about connecting those habits that we have deeply rooted in our daily journey through connections in order to be able to introduce new ones.
The fastest way to form a new habit is to stack it on top of a current habit. The latter is fixed in our brain connections in a very powerful way, and will drag the habit we incorporate.
The form would be the following:
Before / After (Current habit), What I will do (New habit)
Ex- After showering in the morning, I will meditate for 10 minutes.
Ej- Before showering in the morning, I will do 30 push-ups. 😳
How to eliminate bad habits?
Bad habits are a poison that appears in your life and that ends up eliminating from your horizon the achievement of objectives. They gradually undermine your morals, and manage to leave you without the energy to live the life you deserve. Realizing the existence of bad habits and analyzing the cause of those bad habits is crucial for the development of our mission: to end bad habits. And of course replace it with good ones for your life.
All appear for a good cause, we get a benefit for it, be it physical, emotional or mental. They are in our existence for some reason that we have to unravel so we can change bad habits for others good for us. We will not eliminate them, but replace them with others. We will change one benefit for another. A bad habit for a good habit.
How will we replace some habits with others? How to leave bad habits?
First we will choose the substitute for that habit. And we will create a plan of action for when the stress or boredom that ignites the motor of our bad habit appears. We have to be very meticulous in describing and controlling all the aspects that surround that habit. Let’s answer the following questions:
When does that habit appear that you want to eradicate? How many times a day? In what situations? How does it transform you? What is the reminder that triggers the habit? How do you feel?
To give an example: What will you do when you want to eat between meals? What will you do when you feel like watching TV? For example, in this last habit, after knowing what is the cause of wanting to turn on the television, we can replace it by going for a walk (alone or accompanied) or It does not make the right day to read a book.
Secondly, if we have the possibility to do so, let’s shout to the world our plan to change habits. Let’s say it to our partner, father, friend or enemy … It will help us to get involved if it fits even more with the objective. And if possible, avoid the circumstances and people who invite us to the unhealthy habit.
Third. Visualize how you will feel when you have modified the habit. You have to empty your mind to see your own movie . Describe your feelings carefully.
Quarter. Create powerful affirmations that help you achieve your goal. Take off pressure. Remember that modern physics says: You can. 💪
Finally remember that it will not be easy, but if you propose, with perseverance and patience you will end up being a specialist in changing habits.