As we finish up the second week of the new year, have you started to create a new habit and routine?I often refer to habits as ruts in a road (especially the bad ones). We carry on with the same activities simply because it is easy and comfortable. It’s often only after we realize that we need to make changes (lose weight, start an exercise program, start a class) that the rut or negative habit becomes obvious. Earlier in the month, I shared that my word of the year is Direction. My focus needs to be upon where I am going and what habits, routines and steps am I taking to reach my goal. To be honest, I have not taken on multiple changes as it is more important to become successful with one goal than minimally successful with several. Here is an update of what I have been working on since January 1. As you read this, I am on my 9th day of waking up at 5:00 am to work out. Fortunately I am a morning person by nature and I’ve often woke up before my alarm. I want to note that I would prefer to stay in my nice comfy and warm bed but my new schedule is better off with a morning workout. You may have heard that it takes 28 days to make a habit but research is showing it may be closer to 66 days before a new habit is completely formed. We will see how this continues to work out for me. I’ve changed my work schedule and have decided to not be an adjunct professor this semester. As a result of this decision, I’ve added more spaces for clients. This is a major change in my routine and it’s been odd having time that was once dedicated to classes and grading. Additionally, cold and snowy weather often makes clients cancel so I am struggling with time I had planned to be filled. I’m creating lists of new handouts to make and working on trainings with my down time but sometimes I just want to spend time reading blogs, recipes and anything else that is sometimes not productive.. We continue to love our Hello Fresh meals and are making better choices when we eat out. Meal planning continues to not be one of my strongest skills so it is an asset to have food delivered to our house. If you look through my Instagram feed, I’ve suddenly become a foodie. In many ways, it does help hold me accountable. I’m not going to apologize for the fact that I love a good cappuccino or coffee. I do believe that somewhere it is stated coffee is good for you! What I am rediscovering about creating a new habit and routine is that when you make one change in one area, all other areas are also impacted. An early morning workout means an early bedtime. Cooking at home means scheduling in time to prep the food.
Here are my suggestions if you are still considering implementing a new habit and routine,
- Acknowledge what you are wanting to change. State it to others or write it down.
- Put it on your calendar. Schedule the early morning workout or time to grocery shop.
- Tell someone what you are doing. This is different than the first step. This is where you state what steps you are going to do such as going to an early morning exercise class.
- Take the first step and do it! I set my first alarm for 4:50 am and got up, although drowsy and completed my first workout.
- Keep doing the first step over and over.
- Realize that slipping up is going to happen. It does not mean you can not return to the first step again.
- Begin to realize that the new habit has become to feel like part of your daily life.
How do you create a new habit and routine?