Want to create healthy habits but there’s no way you can stick to them? You go about it the wrong way. Here you will learn common mistakes people like you make creating healthy habits that makes them frustrated.
First what are habits? Habits are actions which the body is used to do.
What makes an action familiar vs not familiar? Repetition, the number of times the behavior is been performed compared to other competing options. But there is also a meta-layer which is about how much the mind remembers the habit, or the result of that habit. There is a quote which helped me understand habits and the thoughts:
“The mind always fails first, not the body. The secret is to make your mind work for you, not against you.”Arnold Schwarzenegger
Making new habits comes down to undertanding that the mind comes first.
The mind is prior to everything you do, every behavior has to be a thought before it happens. Or more specifically, you need to be aware of it, because most of your thoughts are unconscious. See this fact, if you’re aware of something it may influence your behavior, if you don’t it cannot. Awareness is something distict and prior to every thoughts, conscious or unconscious.
Memory, or being aware of…, is the root of all behavior.
In you’re daily life, you are aware of the things you’ve been aware of in the past. These things my benefit you or not.
Whatever you think it becomes a solid limitation for you. Let’s say you eat very unhealthily, and want to eat healthy, but it feels extremely hard for you, that’s what I mean with solid, your experience is limited by those thoughts, it’s like a wall you need to break and struggle with it order to do it. But what is that? It’s the conditioning of your mind, being activated, and that conditioning conflicts with what you’re trying to do.
You see what I mean? If your mind is habituated to remembering what you do creating healthy habits it’s going to be extremely hard. Reversing this process takes a little bit of time but knowing this you will no judge how you’re doing.
That’s why It takes a mental care to create healthy habits. Here’s some ways to go about it.
Remember the habit often
Minimum 5 times a day, and remember what benefits you get from this habit. Benefits are crucial, behavior is based on reward. There’s no way you can sustain change without motives to do so.
And do not evaluate or judge yourself based on having this habit or not, you’re making yourself remember them very often along with the benefits, so you’ll do them.
Expose yourself to the new habit many times
Do this without judgement, be very impartial. Most people can’t build habits because they struggle to do so, and they compare it to what they did before, so it becomes difficult with that thought. The goal of this is to get as many impressions as possible, that will make the mind stop being overactive when it’s doing the behavior, when this happens the mind has absorbed the behavior and will execute it. That’s what it means to rewire the subconscious mind.
Be aware of your body’s response to the new habit
Be aware of how your body responds to the habits you’re creating. Don’t try to do anything about it or judge how you’re doing. You want to know them, and in this process of knowing them but not adding anything to them your mind keeps adapting and making the habit.
When you judge or evaluate, you’re creating more solid boundaries on yourself, making your mind struggle to absorb the habit, and you may give up. Each judgement becomes a belief you live by, if you say this is exhauting, this is hard, you’re adding an experience of struggle which wasn’t there originally.
Creating healthy habits it’s about how your emotions responds. The habits we can’t build is so because ouremotions react in a very negative and limiting way. But we can get rid of this negative emotions by exposing our mind and body to the habit more often, without judging how we react. From this position our minds cease to add negative emotion and creating more limiting beliefs, and we begin to get used to the new habit.