Most people know how to make the right choices, but have trouble implementing that change. What is holding you back from being the best version of yourself? Habits are a comfort. It is very easy to get stuck in a routine and pattern – especially if you have been doing it over and over again for years. If you are ready to change here are some steps to help:
- Write down your bad habits, how they make you feel, why you want to change and then put it on your mirror or fridge.
- Replace your unproductive habits and patterns with new positive ones.
- If you give into your habit, write down how it makes you feel afterwards. The next time you are tempted to give into your unproductive pattern force yourself to read the note first.
- Be realistic and do not try to do everything all at once. Change is very hard, especially when patterns are deeply engrained. Choose one small goal to focus on that seems manageable.
- Be consistent and slowly you will see that everything will get easier the more you stick to your goal. Whether it’s having a goal to go to the market on Sunday so you have healthy food for the week, or having three cups of coffee instead of four. Everything counts – be proud of your work.
- Be aware of your environment, bad habit “triggers” and enlist someone to hold you accountable if you feel it is necessary.
- It’s okay to stumble and frankly you should at first. No one is perfect, and perfection is not realistic. It is important to not give up every time you make a mistake or give into an old habit. At least you are being proactive and trying to make a change. That should be your focus. You are human, not a robot who can automatically change with the hit of a switch.
We all have bad habits (including myself). We all have an urge to give into quick fix solutions to satisfy immediate needs. This is human nature. Recognize your bad habits, why they are holding you back and replace them with positive ones. From over doing it on coffee, to ordering takeout every day at lunch and hitting snooze instead of waking up thirty minutes early to get a sweat session in. Taking care of yourself (mentally and physically) is the best tool for success professionally and in your personal life. The more you practice positive habits, the easier they will get.
You can find more of my simple tips recently published in The Huffington Post. Everything boils down to daily patterns, habits and small, consistent changes over time.
Remember to have compassion for yourself, always.
*A cause that is very dear to my heart is the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. I have formed a team in honor of my grandmother, Dr. Lailee Bakhtiar, who passed away after a 21 year battle with the disease. I invite everyone in the greater Los Angeles area to join me April 17th for the 2016 MS Walk. It is free to join. You can sign up and learn more about my team here.