It would be great if we could just have any habit we want in a snap. However, we know that habits are formed overtime. It is during the “formative” time that we usually end up giving up because it is of course the time when we have to rely on motivation and self-discipline. As I have said before though, when the motivation wanes we end up having to work twice as hard to fight inertia. So what do we do while we don’t have our habits to fall back to yet? How do we prepare for the waning of motivation?
One of the best things we can do to make habit forming time easier and so increase our changes of success is to control what we can in our immediate environment while we still have the motivation to do it. Setting up your environment to help you succeed at your goal is definitely not only sensible but also the path to least resistance. For example, if losing weight is your goal and the habits you need to develop include exercise and a healthy diet the first things you need to do is get rid of all the junk food in the house and shop for healthier alternatives. If you have junk food all around you how can you expect to resist the temptation? As for exercise you can buy yourself a good pair of rubber shoes and dust off your exercise equipment. Make what you need accessible and what you don’t inaccessible.
Another thing that is pretty effective is to get some help. Join a group with the same goals as you or have an accountability partner. Make sure your partner is not an enabler or you’ll just end up making excuses for each other. Instead get someone you trust and respect who can help spur and motivate you when you cannot do it yourself. In the end though, it will still be up to you but setting yourself up to succeed instead of setting yourself up to fail sure will help a lot.
Originally posted on April 27, 2010 @ 5:41 pm