When was the last time you thought about making a positive change in your life ?
Setting some goal for yourself - oh we are going to work out everyday maybe even meditate in the mornings and you know what, let's start waking up at 5 from tomorrow.Obviously apart from your new year resolutions 😂 ( been there, done that or more like not done that) we all know the all too familiar feeling of trying to make changes in our lives.
Also, if we want to start eating chocolate everyday after our meal, why does that habit stick & not our goal of working out? Why is it easier to form a not so good habit Vs an actually good habit?
First let's understand what is a habit?
According to Nir Eyal, Habits are automatic, they are behaviours that are done with little or no thought.
You don’t have to force yourself or overcome any form of resistance to carry out that behaviour, for example brushing your teeth or taking a shower everyday.
Whereas most times, what we are really trying to do is form a routine.
A routine is a set of behaviours that you have to intentionally & regularly repeat before it can even begin to look like the start of what you would call a habit, for example if you want to start waking up early, you need to sleep early & to sleep early, you need to eat your dinner on time & that list of things you need to put in effort to do just goes on.
The biggest problem usually is that we try to skip the “Routine” part of things because routines are uncomfortable and at times require considerable effort on our part.
Now that we know a little bit more about habits Vs routines.
Let's look at how much time does it really take to form a habit.
Sadly there is no fixed time, it all depends on the habit, especially if you look at forming a bad habit Vs a good habit.
When we eat junk food it gives us immediate pleasure, staying up late and sleeping in offer us entertainment and comfort; procrastinating instantly spares us effort.
Good habits on the other hand, don’t feel that good and it takes a considerable amount of time before we can start enjoying their benefits. For your brain, it obviously wants to perform & repeat behaviours that provide immediate pleasurable gains.
Now we won’t go into details of how to form better habits because there will be another post for that where we will be able to properly give justice to some amazing methods that have been backed by science but one thing we do want you to remember is to not be too hard on yourself. As you journey towards forming healthier routines, remember that good things take time and every step you take counts.
It’s not a race.