Daily Habits: How to Start Them
Do you find it really hard to get started on your goals? You have all of these amazing things that you want to achieve, but there is an ever present pressure to succeed. You find yourself asking questions like ‘what if I fail?’, or ‘how can I fit all of this extra stuff into my crazy busy world?’ There is a really easy way to relieve the stress and overcome the procrastination. That is to form daily habits.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, so stop pressuring yourself to do too much at once. Take a leaf out of the book those ancient architects and builders were reading. Take small steps towards your big juicy goals with a daily habit.
What are daily habits?
You will have plenty of habits that you have formed during your lifetime. Some will be good, and some not so good. But once you have those habits, they can be hard to break. That is why it is really powerful to have good habits, because you will instinctively do the things that are good for you without question.
Daily habits are something that you incorporate into your routine. Every day you complete a bite sized task to work towards a bigger end goal.
So for example, if you want to improve your mood you could take 5 minutes at the beginning or the end of the day to write down three things you are grateful for.
How do you form daily habits?
Forming any habit takes time. Research suggests that it takes 21 days to form a simple habit. So if you can stick to your routine for 21 days, you will have a very good chance of that habit being permanently incorporated into your life.
How can you do that?
1. Stop stressing
No one needs unnecessary stress in their life. So, stop freaking out about eating better, losing weight or saving money by taking tiny steps towards your goal each day. Feel the pressure just melt away when you know that you are making progress.
2. Start small
Ease yourself into this daily habit thing by starting small. Small steps do not seem as imposing as big steps as they generally take far less time to complete and you don’t need much to get them done.
Instead of trying to fit a 45 minute Ab Shredding gym class into your schedule 3 times a week, spend 5 minutes every day stretching or doing yoga. A great time to do this is before hopping in the shower, or when you have dead time.
Waiting for the kettle to boil? Do some squats.
Sitting in the car at the traffic lights? Do some core work right there in your seat.
3. Make it a priority
If a goal is important to you then you need to make achieving it a priority. I am sure you will have 5 minutes in every day that you can set aside to realise your dreams.
4. Pick a good time
You need to decide when is the best time of the day to complete your daily habit. If you are an early riser then you should complete your task first thing in the morning. Then you will have it done, dusted and out of the way. It won’t hang over your head all day.
However, if you are a night owl then you might prefer to do your task later in the day, or right before bedtime. By choosing the time you are at your most productive, you'll give your habit the best chance of sticking.
5. Set an alarm
If you are someone that will need a reminder to do that task in the early days, then set an alarm on your phone. Having that physical reminder will encourage you to get stuff done.
After a while it will become second nature and you might not need that alarm any more.
6. Trigger it
Slotting your habit into your daily routine will make it easy to remember. One activity will trigger the next and become second nature. For example, when I wake up each morning I do 5 minutes of yoga before I get in the shower.
Waking up triggers me to do yoga, then yoga triggers me to have a shower. My mornings seem really weird if I don’t follow this simple routine now!
7. Track it
Sometimes when you are only doing small things it is hard to see the overall effect. So, you can track your daily habit to keep you on track. After a month, look back on everything you have accomplished and you will see how valuable daily habits can be.
Simply use your own diary, a journal, a chart on the fridge, or if you are really serious then you can actually get a goal tracker.
Forming good daily habits is easy if you take the right approach. Make them work for you and you won’t ever be stressing about how you are going to get stuff done.