We love to read about the habits, rituals, and routines of successful people. But only a few of us implement changes in our lives.
We all know we should eat healthily, move often, stay focused during work, set prioritize but not all of us do the things that we know we should be doing.
So why is there a gap between knowing what to do and actually doing it?
How do we fill the gap?
While there is no easy solution for that, there are a few things you can do to start doing what you know you should be doing.
1. Know your ‘why’
If you want to convert your extrinsic motivation into intrinsic motivation, know why you should be doing the thing you want to do.
If I tell you to meditate for 15 mins. every day because successful people are doing it, you might do it for a few days before you stop doing it. But if I tell you the science behind potential benefits on your mental and emotional well-being, you may never skip a day.
Although meditation might not directly influence your wealth, it can indirectly turn you into a person who is capable of living a rich life. When you know and feel the difference, you will be ready to struggle through the time when it’s hard to continue the habit.
So next time when you read about a habit of a successful person, make the effort to research and find out the potential benefits or drawbacks of action or inaction.
2. Change your beliefs
Changing beliefs is not easy. It takes constant reflection and self-awareness to notice the difference within you. If you believe that something is ‘kind of’ good for you, you’re not going to continue doing it.
Keep working to make your belief system stronger so that the chances of you quitting a habit will diminish.
If you need to, you can tell yourself imaginary story as to why you absolutely need to execute your newly adopted habits. Do it until you start noticing a difference and then your belief system will change.
3. Change your values
Once you start identifying a habit or activity as part of your identity, it is almost impossible to not do it. If you want to eat healthy, value healthy food. Change your identity into a person who eats healthy food.
If you want to eat healthy, value healthy food. Change your identity into a person who respects his/her body and eats healthy food.
It will take some time before you can truly change your values but if you keep on going back to your ‘why’ and reflect to change your beliefs, you will eventually reach a point where you will be a different person. The new habits will be part of who you are.
4. Track progress
We love seeing improvement. But we can only see it if we keep a record of our habits. If you track your habits and see progress, you will not want to lose the progress. As a result, you will stay motivated and strive for further improvement.
Take pride in the amount of progress you have made and set challenging goals. This way, you will never get bored as there will always be the next level to achieve.
Another benefit of measuring your behavior is that you will easily be able to identify mistakes and the barriers in your way.
5. Give yourself freedom
Many times, we follow rules that are told to us. Although it can be good to follow rules sometimes, it is not always the case. We all are different and we all need to add our own approach to do things.
If you’re always bound by rules and do whatever is told to you, you may start feeling demotivated. But if you give yourself permission to tweak some rules and do what works for you, then you will have a habit that is uniquely yours.
6. Learn to let go
When we go through a change, the hardest battle is between the person who you want to be and the person who you were yesterday.
In order to change, you have to let go of your past identity, beliefs, and habits. When you allow something to enter your life, something has to take its place.
You have to make sacrifices, prioritize what matters to you and then let go some of your current habits or beliefs even if you like them.