We have all heard that do something for (insert amount) of days, and it becomes a habit, right? But why is it so difficult to achieve these days. I have told myself countless times that I am going to stop doing ‘this’ and start doing ‘that’. And every time, after that set amount of days, I am still doing ‘this’ and have completely lost sight of ‘that’. My ernest attempt at becoming better gets totally abandoned and the result is sheer frustration and discouragement. I

Through studying several of my role models and reading a billion self help articles, I think that I am finally getting around to overcoming this hurdle, and I have listed the four components that have helped me below:

  1. What? — Figuring out what the habit is that you are trying to create. I think this is the easiest step. Your what could sound like; “I want to go to the gym 4 times a week” or “I want to spend a hour and half reading everyday.”
  2. Why? — Figuring out why you want to build this habit and how it is going to benefit you and make you better. Example; “I want to become stronger and bigger” or “I want to become smarter.” Again this is easy to figure out, it is probably what lead you to your What.
  3. How? — By far the hardest so far… but not impossible. Planning is key here, figuring out what you will have to do to reach your Why? The things that helped me reach my How were the following.
  • Goal Setting — It is crucial to create SMART goals, I won’t go into that right now because WikiHow has already done a great job. Whle, deciding to build a habit is a goal in itself, it is important to create goals to reach your goal of developing that habit. Goals are a great way to benchmark your progress.
  • Routine/Scheduling — Take a look at your schedule, or day-to-day activity and find a time that will consistently work for you to practice your goal. Let your set-aside habit practice time become part of your day-to-day.
  • Distractions — Get as far away from them as possible, but do this strategically. Whether it is another bad habit or even a friend. Now don’t think I’m saying you have to get rid of your friends or even ‘bad’ habits, just strategically plan to not have them around when you striving for your goals.
  • Sharing is Caring — I think it is important to share your goal with someone who will actually listen and hold you to your word. Or even better, encourage that person to build the habit with you, that way you can conquer it with some help.

4. Track, Track, Track — This is where SMART goals become so important. Keep track of your progress in a manor that is natural to you. (If you don’t look in your calendar daily, probably not smart to keep your progress there) This will let you see how you are doing, and be encouragement to continue in that direction or the kick in the ass that you might need to try harder.

Building Good Habits are essential to getting better and achieving the state of Kaizen. I hope my two cents at developing these habits helped you, reach out to me if you want to continue the conversation or if you think I completely missed the boat with this post. I would love any feedback, for this is like the 5th blog post I have written (2 of them being a assignments from my University).

Holler at me.

waream2@vcu.edu