Building a new habit or making a lifestyle change is not easy. It takes effort to continue doing the right things in order make this new habit 'stick'
I look at making lifestyle changes in 3 steps.
1. We make the CHOICE to make a change. We know how we are living is not in line with our new journey. We know something has got to give. We are motivated and excited to see the world differently so we choose to do something about it!
2. We do the right ACTIONS that will give us the desired results. We actually DO IT! We put our new knowledge, information, education, tactics, advice- whatver we have mustered up through research or experience, to work. We don't just join the gym- we go and workout! We don't just download meditations onto our Ipod, we do them every night; we don't just read all the blogs on positive thinking- we actually DO the activities. We get out of our heads and to-do lists, and we step on the gas and GO!
3. We CONSISTENTLY make the choice to do the right actions everyday, until it becomes a natural habit. Once it has become a habit we no longer need to consciously remind ourselves to do it- it is just part of our everyday process. Step 3 is really just step 1 & 2 done consistently.
Think about brushing your teeth. When you were 3 your mom probably had to remind you every single morning and night to brush your teeth. She had to actually do it for you! After years of practice and consistently brushing your teeth day and night- now it's a habit. You do not need to think about it, you just do it.
To make a lifestyle change, you need to really come to terms with step 3. Motivation is what gets us started. It is why we get excited to make those action steps. The tricky part is making the choice to do it every day once that motivation has worn off. So, it is important to come up with future motivators. Delayed gratification if you will. "By making these choices everyday, my life is so much easier. My new changes are now natural habits..." "I look like, feel like, live like..."
Before you start your next lifestyle change- write your future self a letter. What is your delayed gratification for today's hard work?
Make sure you write is as if you have already achieved it!