This morning I was woken by my alarm at my now normal time of 5.30am but something felt different. It was dark, cold and I felt lethargic. I didn’t want to to get out of bed.I certainly didn’t feel inspired to go on the 10k morning walk that has become my new well-being habit.
However, I then remembered the podcast episode I had selected to listen to on my walk. I equally remembered how proud I am that I have walked every morning for months now without breaking the chain. I suddenly found the energy and motivation to rise, get dressed, put my earphones in and take the first steps out of the door for my walk.
So, how have I been able to create and maintain this habit?
The reason good habits have failed for me, and the number one reason that people give up on good habits is that they are not enjoyable. It’s an uncomfortable truth and flies in face of societal views of developing willpower and resilience, but we are simply less likely to continue to do things when we don’t enjoy them. The easier and more enjoyable we make activities the more likely we are to maintain them.
So how do you make activities that are at times uncomfortable and hard, enjoyable?
Well, hundreds of experts have written about the psychology of habits and how to maintain them (James Clear offers the most practical and powerful advice in my opinion), so I won’t suggest here that there is a magic bullet.It’s about finding what works for you. For me, pre-selecting an inspiring podcast or book to listen to, the reward of a lovely cup of tea, and the sense of achievement of walking every morning for months has done the trick.
Be great to hear how you make habits stick and how you make them enjoyable for you?