Change habits: 7 tips that really work
Everyone has them, I'm sure you do too. The good habits and the bad habits. A habit is nothing more than an activity that you perform routinely without giving it much thought. While you can establish new habits relatively quickly, it is often tedious when you want to change old habits. Especially if they are bad habits.
1. Distinguish bad habits from good habitsIf you want to get rid of negative habits, you would do well to first find out which of your behaviors are bad habits and which are not. It will help you to be aware of how habits are established and expressed in human behavior. For your habit to take root, it needs a trigger. This can be, for example, a recurring event, but also a certain time of day or time, a place, a feeling, people with whom you surround yourself or an action. The trigger is followed by the habit itself. Classic examples of this are having a cigarette after a meal or a beer with friends, and reaching for your cell phone when you are standing at the bus stop waiting for the bus.
The same situation always triggers the same action. Now you're probably wondering why this is. The answer is quite simple. Subconsciously, you are hoping for a dopamine boost by performing your habit. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that makes your brain feel good. So if you smoke a cigarette after a meal, it will give you that dopamine boost. In the same way, looking at your cell phone can trigger feelings of happiness if, for example, a friend has written to you. Depending on whether the feeling of happiness lasts for a very short time or is long-lasting and whether the action that triggers it is good for you and your body in the long term, you can now distinguish between good and bad habits. Think about all your recurring actions according to this pattern and notice in which situations it comes to the execution of habits. Soon you will be able to get rid of bad habits.
2. Exchange bad habits for good habits
Once you know which habits you want to get rid of, you should create new habits. It's easier to get rid of bad habits when they are replaced by something new. The best way to do this is to think of a positive alternative for each bad habit. For example, instead of smoking a cigarette after dinner, you could take a short walk around the block. Instead of drinking an after-work beer every night, you could blend up a healthy smoothie. This 1:1 exchange allows you to change habits without creating a gap in your consciousness. Therefore, it will be easier for you to achieve your goal.
3. Train new habits
New habits don't establish themselves on their own. Therefore, you should have a little patience with yourself and realize that you have to go to a kind of fictitious training camp to get rid of your bad habits and exchange them for positive new habits. As with athletes, your training starts in your head. Mentally prepare for your behavior change by imagining how you will not follow the usual bad habit after the trigger you know about. Instead, imagine how you will establish and perform the new habit you have chosen, and how good you will feel afterwards. This imagination alone is a great training. When it comes to the real thing, you are well prepared and remember the new behavioral sequence that you have already played out in your mind.
4. Formulate goals positively
New habits are also easier to create if you basically try to avoid negative thoughts and phrases. Of course, you want to get rid of bad habits, so you might be tempted to think: smoking is bad for me, or chocolate makes you fat. However, with this attitude you color your thoughts darkly instead of brightly. Therefore, try to change everything you want to do without in the future into a positive basic attitude and thought. This could then read like this: If I exercise instead of smoking, I will soon be totally fit. Or: Healthy nutrition is good for me.
5 Talk about successes
When you inform friends, partners and family about your intention to change bad habits, you build a network of supporters. Inform them about progress and successes. This is also a self-monitoring tool for you and helps you stay on the ball. If you don't provide information about the status of your project, people around you will ask about it. It feels great when you can tell them about your successes. In addition, you will reap a lot of positive feedback, which will be good for your soul and encourage you on your way.
6. Do not forget reward
Breaking bad habits requires a lot of self-discipline. It's exhausting because you're also missing the habitual dopamine release as a soul stroker. Ideally, the newly established habit will soon release a lot of dopamine as well. You can support this with your own little reward system. Think about things that you enjoy and that are good for your body and soul. For example, if you have consistently exchanged bad habits for good ones for a week, you can invite yourself to the cinema or go to the sauna. In this way, the newly learned behavior becomes more deeply ingrained in you than it would be without a reward system. This is because your brain stores the fact that changing habits is followed by a release of dopamine and wants more of it.
7. Couple new habits with existing ones
One of the best ways to establish new habits is by coupling them with your existing habits. It's best to take an activity that you do every day and simply add your new desired habit to it. For example, if you've resolved to do something for your improved sleep hygiene, right after brushing your teeth, you can switch your phone to airplane mode and put it away. PS: For better sleep, we recommend another habit that you can do right after you brush your teeth: LipoVibes Pure Melatonin has a much higher bioavailability than conventional melatonin products and can therefore have a positive effect on your sleep quality.