Does your motivation wear out after one or two weeks of a new diet or exercise routine? Using motivation alone does not last long. Instead, here are two simple criteria for creating healthy habits that stick.
Trick No. 1
The first trick to creating healthy habits that stick is to make it simple. For example, if you want to create a habit of daily exercise, start small (like five minutes daily). You can up your routine after it is an established habit. One of my favorites is Five Minutes of Tai Chi a Day. Others like the 7-minute high intensity interval training routine (HIIT) that many are substituting for longer exercise routines. Save time and get amazing health benefits.
If a healthy diet is your goal, start by substituting cereal for oatmeal at breakfast. Or perhaps adding more protein and healthy fats is a good idea. One doable substitution at a time. Simple.
Trick No. 2
The second trick to creating healthy habits that stick is to plop this new habit before another already established habit. With the exercise example, you might commit to five minutes of squats daily while you are booting up your computer. Or while your coffee is brewing. Or before you have breakfast. Make it simple. Perhaps eliminating social media browsing is necessary to fit in this new healthy habit.
With the diet example, that’s even easier. You were already eating breakfast, now you eat something healthy in place of the cereal.
Commit & See Results
Do this every day. The result? Simple. You created a healthy habit of daily exercise or a step toward a healthier diet. And believe me when I tell you that five minutes of squats or substituting oatmeal for cold cereal will turn into a more productive and health promoting habits over time.
Rinse and Repeat
After creating a small, simple habit in one health area, you can venture out. Create habits in different areas including: diet, exercise, mindfulness, sleep, brain health, social connections, charity, etc. Take a quiz to find out which areas are most important for you to establish new habits.