HOW TO INTRODUCE NEW HABITS
A STEP - BY - STEP GUIDE TO MAKING YOUR HABITS BETTER
STEP ONE - UNDERSTAND YOUR CURRENT HABITS AND HOW THEY SERVE YOU
Therefore the first step is to actually assess what habits you already have. This is quite simple really. Take a piece of paper or a spare page on notion or your note-taking app and jot down everything you do now out of habit.
Chances are when brainstorming you will over-emphasise your habits (don’t worry this is a good thing). You should have a list now of habits that are either engrained or something you do frequently enough for you to put on this list.
You may now also have a list of ‘bad’ habits. We don’t actually like the term ‘bad’ for habits as often this is hugely subjective and swayed by society, for example watching YouTube first thing could be classified as a bad habit, but actually this is where a breadth of knowledge is found.
For each habit, jot down the impact this has on your day, your goals or even as wide as your life. This will give you a clear picture of your current habits and how they actually serve you.
STEP TWO - UNDERSTAND WHICH HABITS TO ADD
Now you have your list, you will be able to move onto the next step of understanding what new habit is actually best to add.
If you have been ambitious with your habits, you may find that there are a few things on your list that are sporadic, but not daily. If the impact they have on your day is positive and measurable, chosing one of these sporadic habits to focus on and add properly into your routine will be the easiest and most impactful.
If not and you are wanting to add a new habit from scratch, it’s time to have a brainstorm and think about what habits will best serve you. This is simpler than it sounds, and actually only takes a few steps, the key thing and the only difficulty is that it’s all about mindset and putting yourself at the centre.
– take a look at any goals or ambitions you have. Find commonalities in practice (i.e. working for a new job, completing a course, learning a new skill
– a commonality would be research or reading. Training for a marathon, wanting to reach a certain % body fat or having a strength goal would be exercise).
– Think about days where you have been in your best flow state, and reflect on what happened. Was it because you started the day with a walk outside, was it because you left your phone in another room and didn’t check it for later. Jot down anything that springs to mind that helped you have that good day.
Head back to our video on adding to your morning routine for a deep dive into the following topics of habits to get some inspiration around what habits you could add.
– Now you have a shortlist. Go through and do the same practice of what serves you as you did for your current habits. From this you will be able to see the most impactful habit.
STEP THREE - MAKE SPACE FOR A NEW HABIT
You can’t just squidge a habit into your current day. You need to make space for a new habit, understanding it will be time-consuming in the beginning before it becomes an actual habit.
There are a few ways in which you can make space:
1. eradicate a habit that doesn’t serve you – the best example of this being using your phone first thing
2. streamline your current habits to be more efficient – i.e brush your teeth while you boil the kettle and check your emails, although this can be quite intense for a first adapdation
3. make more time in your day by waking up ten minutes earlier
We won’t tell you which will work best for you, but in our experience, the easiest route to take is three, you will be surprised how little 10 minutes difference makes to your feeling of being tired, and how big of a difference it makes to being able to do one more thing in your day.
STEP FOUR - START WITH THE SMALLEST VERSION
We really are about small, sustainable change – trying to do too much at once is the key reason people fail at anything they are trying to do.
Take the habit you have identified as the best serving for you, and break it down to its smallest iteration. For example, if you want to get into the habit of reading a chapter every day, start with reading a sentence every day.
STEP FIVE - ASSESS AND ADJUST UNTIL IT STICKS
Consistency really is the key in making a new habit stick. In some of our content we explore strategies such as the habit loop, but to be honest, the key to introducing new habits is consistency. This is why we track absolutely everything. By assessing how often you can stick to this habit, and how well you are implementing it – you will force yourself to be consistent, and you will be able to adjust accordingly. Once you have nailed reading one sentence, move to a paragraph, then a page, then two, all the way to a chapter. By tracking and assessing your progress you will know when you can add more to your habit, or when it has become part of your routine. This is why we use our habit tracker, it tricks you into completing your habit through satisfaction and it clearly tracks days so you can see where you’re dipping and assess what happened on that day to work around it.
By tracking everything (and by the nature of how we have set up the template) you are able to see at a snapshot where you are and how you’re progressing.
Introducing new habits is an incredible strategy to reach all your goals, be more productive and make space for things that make you happy. However knowing the framework and how to introduce them, ensuring it is all on your terms is what counts. Save this framework and refer back whenever you get tempted to try and jump to the end by trying to add a new life-changing habit with no prep work.