I like to get right to the point and I know my readers like that too! This is blog 3/5, providing you with the Lessons I learned from reading Atomic Habits.
You are making your "New" Habit way too complicated.
You can optimize your new habit, once it indeed becomes a habit, and you find yourself showing up for it regularly!
Want to start meditating?
Set the timer for 2 minutes. If you find yourself drifting away, well good - you "get to" practice coming back to it.
Want to start reading?
Read one page.
Want to start running?
Put on your running shoes and tie them.
Arguably one of the most valuable tips we covered this week in part 3/5 of our book club reading of Atomic Habits.
This might sound silly but I challenge you to try it! How many times have you experienced yourself or watched a loved one go "all-in" on something, like a diet, and quit it entirely 2 weeks later? Exactly.
I like to think of our habits as "grooves" in the brain. Most of our current habits are so deeply carved out, that it's easy to fall into those habits subconsciously. So to establish a new habit that we automatically show up for, we have to carve a new groove.
The way we do that is repetition. 2 minutes of repetition is easy to show up for and we can build upon that over time!
You can't optimize a habit that doesn't exist so we first need to make it exist in our lives!
A new habit should not feel like a challenge
The more you ritualize the beginning of a process, the more likely it becomes that you can slip into the state of deep focus that is required to do great things!
Researchers estimate that 40-50 percent of our actions on any given day are done out of habit.
What about the hard habits? One way to reprogram your brain to enjoy hard habits is to make them more attractive and associate them with a positive experience.
So often we say "I have to". But what if you replaced that with "I get to"? I get to wake up early for work. I get to make another sales call for my business. I get to cook dinner for my family.
James Clear, author of Atomic Habits shared a story about a man in a wheelchair. When asked if it was difficult being confined, he responded, "I'm not confined to my wheelchair - I am liberated by it. If it wasn't for my wheelchair, I would be bed-bound and never able to leave my house". This shift in perspective completely transformed how he lived each day.
Reframing your habits to highlight their benefits rather than their drawbacks is a fast and lightweight way to reprogram your mind and make a habit seem more attractive!
Are you enjoying these weekly recaps of our Atomic Habits read?
Please take a moment to like this blog post if so!
Keep Rising, you are closer than you think!