The quality of one’s life depends on their habits. Having a set of positive habits can inspire you to live a meaningful life. But if you have more bad habits than good habits – then it can prevent you from living a good life.
By takings some self-time and analyzing your life; you can have a better idea of your good habits and bad habits.
Developing a new (good) habit isn’t that difficult if you are aware of these common mistakes most people make when they try to build a new habit.
1. Not going after the keystone habits first
One common mistake most people make when they try to build new habits is –
they don’t go after keystone habits at first.
It’s because they don’t dig deeper to find out what’s impacting their life in its core.
Some people have a good self foundation and a few bad habits. It’s easy for them to build a new habit if the try.
But if someone has some bad habits for a long time, it weakens their foundation.
So, the first thing they need to do is to go after keystone habits to ensure they got their foundation right.
Here are some keystone habits to go for:
- Giving your mind enough time to relax. 7-8 hours of good undisturbed sleep.
- Burn those calories. 30 minutes of exercise or physical activity.
- Food journaling. Keep an eye on what you eat.
- Quality time spent with family.
- Time management.
2. Try to build one habit at a time
If you don’t focus on building one new habit at a time then the chances of failure increases.
When you want to go after many habits your willpower and energy gets divided into parts. It becomes easier to get lost and quit your habits.
That’s why you want to build one habit at a time. And when you master that; you want to go after another one. Continue this process and you can end all your bad habits and make new good habits.
3. Not changing your social circle and your environment
People we hang out with on a daily basis influence us.
If you surround yourself with good peoples then you get the chance to develop their good habits.
By seeing how they work and what they do when they face a problem; you gain many experiences that can bring a positive impact on your life.
Your environment and the people around you play a big role when you want to develop a new habit.
In most of the cases, people develop some common bad habits like smoking and taking drugs from their friends.
If your friends smoke or take drugs then one day might come when you are feeling low in life. And one of them suggests you, to smoke or to take drugs to release the stress. It can trigger you to start a bad habit.
Also, when you see many of your friends have a bad habit then after some time you don’t feel like its that bad.
So, take a look at your social circle and your environment, are there any people like this?
If there are then try to keep a distance or spent the least amount of time with them.
It will do three things:
- Help you not to develop their bad habits.
- It will be easier to quit a bad habit.
- Their negative energy won’t influence you when you want to build a new good habit.
Suggested reading: How to Avoid Negative People -wikiHow
4. Losing focus
Technology has become so advanced in the last 15 years.
It’s a good thing.
Now communication is easy and faster than ever before.
Also, now it’s easy to get lost.
Your phone, tablet, laptop – keeps you updated every second about what is happening around the world.
Getting lost in this can interrupt your workflow and you can lose your focus.
Also, If you can’t limit its use…it can distract you from building a new habit.
So, it’s OK to turn them off if you are doing some important task that can affect your daily habits. You should manage to have one session of uninterrupted long work hours (2-3 hours) in a day.
Popular social media like Facebook, youtube and Instagram have their own algorithms that show you more of what you would like to see. It keeps you longer on these platforms.
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When you spend too much time on social media you began to care about popular trends and hypes. This can lead to waste of your productive hours.
Everyone got 24 hours. So if you spent 1 hour on social media you spend that from your 24 hours.
Now when you spent too much time on unimportant things like this you get less time to do things that matters.
Wasting 3 hours on distractions can force you to cut time from other activities. Like this can make you spend less time on self-care and things that make you happy.
That’s why time management and maintaining a balance in life is important.
5. Not focusing on lifestyle changes
Some people exercise in the morning – just to be slim. Only caring about the end result can make the journey difficult and it’s no fun.
You need to focus on lifestyle changes. It will make building a new habit – fun and easy.
Let’s say you want to get fit before the summer and lose some weight.
There are two ways to get the result.
- You can exercise 5 days a week in the morning.
- Or you can add fitness into your lifestyle.
Here’s why lifestyle change is better and fun to do.
You tell yourself that – “I want to run in the morning because I want to enjoy the fresh morning air and sunshine. I want to fuel my creativity and want to sweat. I like to be strong, so I will train myself and be stronger to protect myself and help others in need.”
See, changing some small things makes it fun and easy to do. Also, you will get the results even faster.
6. Your plans are only on paper
Its good to be self-aware of your bad habits. And if you have made plans to change those then you are ahead of 90% of the population.
But if you don’t take action or don’t execute the plans you have made then you can’t expect the good results.
It’s one of the most common mistakes people make when they try to build a new habit. It feels nice to plan what you need to do. But when your action doesn’t match with your plan the outcome will be zero.
So, you need to make a realistic plan.
What you plan you need to get it done. It’s ok to plan less and do more. But planning a lot and taking no action can’t help you to adopt new habits.
7. Taking big steps in the beginning before they are ready
Many people start big when they want to build a new habit. It’s a wrong approach.
At the beginning of your journey, you should take small steps. Make yourself comfortable, feel the change and then go for bigger goals.
For example, if you are doing a side business and it generated five figure in profit for two months… it’s not a good idea to quit your day job. If next month your side business doesn’t perform according to your plan then you will be in a bad financial state.
You need to start with small manageable positive habits.
If you start big and fail then you can get demotivated by the loss of energy, financial resources and time.
Example: You want to make a new habit of working out in the gym early morning. Don’t start it by purchasing a one-year gym membership.
First, make a habit to wake up in the morning and run for 20 minutes. When you turn it into a daily habit try exercising 30 minutes in the morning for one week.
If you complete this far then buy the gym membership.
Taking big steps, in the beginning, limits your choices. If things don’t go according to the plan you can face stress and burnout. So choose small progress over big overnight changes. Its more practical and makes it easy for you to successfully build a new habit.
- 7 Simple Lifestyle Changes That Have Huge Impact On Your Life
- 11 Practical Ways to Live a Better Life
Most common mistakes people make when they try to build a new habit:
- They don’t start with keystone habits.
- They go after many habits at once. The right way is to concentrate on building one habit at a time.
- Not changing the social circle and environment. Good social circle and environment can make it easier to build a new habit. Where the opposite will make it difficult to stop a bad habit and start a new habit.
- If you are not focused, it’s easy to lose sight of your goals.
- Focus on lifestyle changes. To make things fun and easy.
- Do what you plan and make realistic plans.
- Start small
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