4 Barriers to Changing Habits and How to Overcome Them
How do you create good habits? Most of us have tried and failed to change our habits many times. There are several common barriers to changing your behaviours, but there are ways to overcome them. Here are 4 common barriers and how to overcome them.
1. Trying too much too soon
When you’re trying to change a habit, or create a new one, you need to start small. Choose a small behavior and do it often. It’s best if you plan to do it immediately after something you already do. It helps trigger your brain. The trick is to do a little every day. The pleasure or success you experience will encourage you to repeat the behavior again the next day.
2. Focusing on the wrong thing
Many people make of the mistake of focusing on the wrong thing – such as the end goal. For example, if your goal is to lose weight, it doesn’t help you to focus on how much you want to lose weight or what you don’t like about your body. Nor does it help to punish yourself every time you eat a cookie. Instead, focus on the small behaviors you’re doing each day to improve your health. Focus on the positive. Every time you engage in physical activity or make a healthy food choice, feel good about it.
3. Lack of Belief
If you’re going to set a goal, you must believe in your ability to achieve it. Understand the difference between a wish and a goal. A negative frame of mind makes you your own biggest barrier to making changes. With every small behavior you practice, mentally reward yourself and allow it to build your confidence. If you doubt your abilities, you can repel what you desire most with this attitude. A consistently positive attitude makes it easy to add other small behaviors that reinforce your new self-image.
4. Lack of planning
If you want anything to work well it must have a plan of attack. You need to put some thought into what you want to change, when you will do the new behavior, why you want to do it and any other details you can think of. For example, if you want to create the habit of exercise then you must decide what exercis, what days and for how long before you jump into your running shoes.
Remember to be kind to yourself. A healthy mind is as important as a healthy body. Your best tools are a positive attitude and the perseverance to keep trying.
-Carine Coulm, CEO of Belty