Reaching your goals is more than just following a quick fix, it is about changing habits to reach your goals and to maintain those goals by creating a healthier lifestyle!
4 Reasons Way Changing Your Habits to Reach Your Goal is Important
1. Habits are who we are:
A habit is something that we do intuitively, without thinking much about it. We already have tons of habits that we don't even think about: brushing our teeth a certain way, how we drink our coffee, the way we communicate with our family, the time that we get up in the morning...and so on. Habits are our routine, they become who we are. If we want to see permanent change, if we want to be a different person, we have to change our habits to reach our goals.
2. Changing Our habits:
Habits are not set in stone, we can change our habits to fit our goals. However, some habits might be hard to break. For example, I smoked for 16 years, this was an addictive habit and one of the hardest habits I have ever had to break. But with continued dedication and focus, I broke that habit.
If you want to eat healthier, lose weight, build lean muscle you have to put in place the good habits that will help you reach your goals. You have to enforce those habits each and every single day until they become second nature and you do them without even thinking.
Breaking old habits preventing you from reaching your goal may be hard but if you truly want to see the change you can do it. Stay focused on the goal and eventually, these bad habits will be a distant memory and you will wonder why you didn't make those changes sooner.
Quick fixes are not habits, they might solve the problem for a short period of time. But if you didn't make good habits and eliminate the bad habits during your quick fix, you are bound to return to the person you were before the quick fix.
3. Habits are a Foundation for Our Life:
Because habits become second nature and who you are, they create the foundation and set the tone for our life. If you have a habit of eating healthy you will become a healthier person. If you have a habit of working out routinely you will become more physically fit. This goes for more than just health, but also for your personality. If you create a habit of greeting people with joy and a friendly smile you will become a friendlier person. If you create a habit of looking on the bright side of things, you can become a more optimistic person.
So who is it that you want to be? What habits do you need to set and what habits do you need to break to become that person?
4. Habits Become Our Motivation:
We have all had those days where we just don't feel like eating right, exercising, working, dealing with our kids or pets. But once these things have become habits, they become second nature and we do them without thinking. Sure, some days we might need to convince ourselves to do them, but we do that convincing to stick to our habits.
Once a habit like eating healthy becomes a true habit, you can allow yourself to enjoy that cupcake, ice cream, or piece of cake because the next day you'll go right back to the habit of eating healthy. Enjoying one cupcake one day does not create a new habit. It does not break your good habit. Once you have a foundation of good habits, you can occasionally allow yourself those bad habit items.
However, you have got to build that good foundation first, which takes time, and quick fixes typically do not allow you that time. This is why you can see people lose a ton of weight quickly, only to put that weight right back on. This is because they didn't break their bad habits and allow themselves the time to build those new good habits.
Habits work through a habit loop
- Cue/Trigger: A location, a time of day, certain people, an emotion.
- Routine: Watching TV, smoking a cigarette, eating chocolate, biting your nails.
- Reward: The pleasure chemicals released in the brain because of the routine.
It is because of the reward that the habit loop is reinforced. The loop, over time becomes automatic.
Habits Never Really Disappear
Because habits become a part of who we are, we can not extinguish a bad habit, we can only change it.
Take my quitting smoking for example. I quit 5 years ago, and while I no longer sit around craving cigarettes. I do occasionally think about them, about how I would smoke after certain things, after eating was a big one. Now, I no longer go outside immediately after eating to light up. I sit back and relax, I allow my food to digest and I drink some water.
If you have a bad habit you want to break the best thing that you can do is replace that bad habit with a new good habit.
The Golden Rule of Changing a Habit:
- Use the same cue
- CHANGE the routine
- Provide the same reward
This rule allows you to identify what triggers the bad habit, replace that bad habit with a new good habit that triggers the same reward.
Conclusion: Changing Habits to Reach Your Goals:
If you want to see permanent change, if you want to become a different person to have to make the change necessary to reach those goals. Eliminate those bad habits, replace them with good habits, and soon you will not only reach your goals, but you will be able to maintain those goals and even exceed them!