Lifestyle Change

“Those who are truly enlightened know what they want out of life, emotionally, materially, physically and spiritually.  Clearly defined priorities and goals for every aspect of your life will serve a role similar to that played by a lighthouse, offering you guidance and refuge when the seas become rough.  You see, anyone can revolutionize their lives once they revolutionize the direction in which they are moving.  But if you don’t even know where you are going, how will you ever know when you get there?” ~ Robin S. Sharma, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari

Quick-fixes do not work.

Quick-fixes do not work.

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“Quick-fixes do not work.  All lasting inner change requires time and effort.  Persistence is the mother of personal change.  I’m not saying that it will take years to make profound changes in your life.  If you diligently apply the strategies I am sharing with you every day for only one month, you will be astonished at the results.  You will begin to tap into the highest levels of your own capacity and enter the realm of the miraculous.  But to reach this destination, you must not get hung up on the outcome.  Instead, enjoy the process of personal expansion and growth.  Ironically, the less you focus on the end result, the quicker it will come.” ~ Robin S. Sharma, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari

“Whether people change their mindset in order to further their career, heal from a loss, help their children thrive, lose weight, or control their anger, change needs to be maintained.  It’s amazing – once a problem improves, people often stop doing what caused it to improve.  Once you feel better, you stop taking your medicine.  But change doesn’t work that way.  When you’ve lost weight, the issue doesn’t go away.  Or when your child starts to love learning, the problem isn’t solved forever.  Or when you and your partner start communicating better, that’s not the end of it.  These changes have to be supported or they can go away faster than they appeared.” ~ Carol Dweck, Mindset

Habit Stacking – A Simple and Effective Way to Create New, Positive Habits in Your Life.

Habit Stacking - A Simple and Effective Way to Create New, Positive Habits in Your Life.

As creatures of habit, there are dozens – if not hundreds – of things that we do on a regular basis that don’t even require as much as a single thought.  Things that we have done so often, and over such an extended period of time, that they literally have become a part of who we are and how we go about our day.

Some of these habits are healthy, empowering, and good, while some of these habits are unhealthy, disempowering, and not-so-good.  And, once a habit is established, it’s very hard to break – a truth I’m sure you’re all too familiar with.

What’s easier than breaking an old, bad habit is creating a new, good habit.  This is where habit stacking comes in to play.

The idea is simple: Take a habit that is already established and a part of your lifestyle and stack a new habit (that you want to build) on top of it.  By pairing them up, you use the first – already established habit – as a trigger to remind you and drive you to do the second.

Think about it…

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“Exceptions lead to more exceptions. It’s really easy to justify not doing [a] new habit (or doing an old habit you’re trying to quit) by saying, ‘Just one time won’t hurt.’ Except that it will, because now you think it’s OK to make exceptions. And now you don’t really trust yourself to stick to your promise to yourself. It’s much more effective to not make exceptions — catch yourself if you’re thinking about it and trying to justify it, and remember your motivations. When I quit smoking, I told myself Not One Puff Ever (NOPE).” ~ Leo Babauta, Zen Habits

“We’re not in it for the short game, we’re in it for the long game. It can be hard to figure out which change to make right now, because that means giving up lots of other important changes. And I’ve seen people agonize over which change to make first, because they think the order matters. Sure, maybe it would be optimal to learn to meditate first, before making eating changes, but you know what’s not optimal? Making no changes. Over the long term, if you pick one small change at a time, you’ll have all the important habits formed. So honestly, just pick the one you feel like doing the most — the one that you’ll enjoy most.” ~ Leo Babauta, Zen Habits

“When you make a small change, your ‘normal’ adjusts. Imagine that you’re used to a whole set of conditions — if you deviate from those conditions very much, you will be uncomfortable. Going to live in a foreign country where you don’t speak the language, don’t know anyone, aren’t used to the food, don’t understand the customs, don’t have the same kind of home you’re used to … this can be very difficult. But if you make one tiny change, it’s not very uncomfortable. And after a month or two, you adapt to this tiny change, and it becomes part of the conditions that you’re used to. Your new normal. Changing your life in small steps like this, one small change at a time, is much easier and much more likely to succeed than making multiple huge changes all at once. Gradually change your normal.” ~ Leo Babauta, Zen Habits

 

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