Building a New Habit Successfully

Building habits can be fun or frustrating for some. This week, someone asked me to help them with a new habit goal. It’s both an honor and fun to help someone grow. A new habit has to be something you want. We change because we want to. It has been said that we change when the pain of remaining the same remains too great. That may be true, however, you can change for loving and positive reasons as well. Imagine the end results of the change you want; better health, financial freedom, loving relationships, and new opportunities. When you see it, it becomes a step of faith for you. You are not there yet but you will be.

I ask this person to commit to one thing though. Do it for 100 days. In 100 days the habit will be part of your life. You will want to continue and if you miss a day, it doesn’t feel right. If you track your new habit daily by using a habit tracker on paper, your calendar, or an app, you will create a streak. It is so motivating to have a daily winning streak. If you miss a day don’t beat yourself up. If you miss two days pay closer attention to why.

I have a confession, change is enjoyable to me. Change of scenery, changing up how a goal or task is accomplished, change of a route when traveling. When I envision what a new habit will mean to others and me, it is highly motivating. Creating a new habit to help me accomplish one of my life’s purposes is rewarding and fun. However, I meet some people that tell me they tried and failed with a new habit or breaking a bad habit. Let me offer a few suggestions.

  1. Have a good reason to change your habits or build a new habit and keep it front of you.
  2. Ask yourself why you want to build this new habit. For example, I want to have the energy and flexibility to play with my children or grandchildren. You might want to incorporate this as a healthy habit. I will stretch 7 minutes daily when I rise, walk briskly for 30 minutes 3x week, strength train 3x week, and eat healthy meals.
  3. Commit to 100 days.
  4. Enlist an encouragement partner. Check in with one another.
  5. Envision the end results.
  6. Measure your progress.
  7. Celebrate your progress.
  8. Use a habit tracker.
  9. Rely on God’s power to help you.

Keep a mental picture of yourself playing with your grands! Imagine, imagine, imagine that dream and build that habit so that you are motivated to keep going.

What are some new habits that you would like to acquire? Why? Which habits do you need to improve? Why? Are there habits you need to break? Why?


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