Would you like to optimize your life? Maybe you already have an overarching sense of purpose and where you’d like to be headed but perhaps much of what you truly want in life is on the back burner for now.
An intentional life is one that requires not only knowing your purpose or calling and defining your goals but also forming the habits that you need to take you to your destination.
The thing with habits is that you often don’t even realize that you have them. Over time you form default modes of operation by doing things the same way repeatedly over time.
According to Mirriam-Webster a habit is:
“something that a person does often in a regular and repeated way, a behavior pattern acquired by frequent repetition or psychologic exposure that shows itself in regularity or increased facility of performance, an acquired mode of behavior that has become nearly or completely involuntary.”
Habits – The Tracks That Allow The Train to Go Clickety Clack
Good habits are like railroad tracks. A train can’t go anywhere or accomplish anything without solidly laid tracks. So it is with people. Those who thrive in life have discovered their calling or purpose in life and have clearly defined their goals which then must be broken down into smaller steps. And then there are daily habits that allow them to move forward toward their life purpose.
Healthy habits are things that set you up for success – ways of doing life that once established through repetition become your default. A person without needed habits, is like a train that hits a crack in the tracks and gets stuck. The train can’t move forward to it’s destination until the track is repaired. And so the person who is not moving forward in life as desired, may need to lay down some new tracks, so to speak, by creating new habits.
In his book, ‘The Power of Habit’, Charles Duhigg says once habits are established,
”the brain starts working less and less…The brain can almost completely shut down…And this is a real advantage, because it means you have all of this mental activity you can devote to something else.”
Helpful habits actually set your mind free to be more creative, thoughtful and present. Habits and routines reduce stress and anxiety and increase productivity by alleviating the need for continuous unnecessary decisions.
5 Simple Steps To A Habit Re-vamp:
- First, identify and write out your habits of thought and action that might be holding you back.
- Analyze your current habits and identify what needs to change.
- Make a list of new habits you would like to establish in place of existing habits.
- Now prioritize the new habits in terms of which one to take on first, second, etc…
- Now you’re ready to rock and roll! Take that first habit and make it happen for 21 days, the time that researchers say it takes to form a new habit.
You see what is happening while you form a new habit is that the brain is literally being changed and new neuro pathways are being developed that allow you to function differently. Isn’t that crazy?
So, there you go! Change your habits, change your brain, and fulfill your life goals!