In the spirit of a new year, here are a few really simple ways to get your New Year’s resolutions to stick:
- Keep the new habit simple: make sure you can describe a discrete action in one sentence. If you want it to be more complicated, add additional bits later. For example, “I will do push-ups every day” is nice and achievable, rather than the vague “I will exercise”. It is also way more achievable than “I will attend 3 different exercise classes per week” – you’d better just start with one, and really get into it.
- Attach the new habit to something you already do automatically. If you want to call your mother every week, pick a weekly activity: “I will call Mum before I put the rubbish bin out for weekly collection”. Or for the earlier example “I’ll do my push-ups before I have my morning shower”.
- Write down why achieving this new habit makes you happy, and record your activity on a daily / weekly grid. This is a simple way to keep the new habit in your consciousness, so that it doesn’t get forgotten or lose its relevance. Make it part of the new habit to cross off the day / week as soon as you have done it. I recommend 30 days / weeks, and if it isn’t “set” at the end of that time, do another set of 30.
There are dozens of other ways to be successful, but these are my top three.
I use the template and ideas suggested by Hal Elrod in “The Miracle Morning” to kick off some of my new habits.
Got any good templates that you use? I’d love to hear about them!