The Problem With Trying to Create New Habits

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Remembering to remember...


When we first start working on a new goal or habit, the hardest thing to overcome is remembering to do it daily. But until an action has been repeated faithfully for several weeks, the subconscious mind will NOT create an automatic program for the action or behavior, and thus it will not become a habit.

It's not that we intentionally choose to forget. Life's a busy thing. Remembering to squeeze another activity into our day can be difficult.

But there is one easy way to remember to remember...

We all have existing automatic programs running constantly throughout every day of our lives. Actually we have tons of them, though for the most part they are done unconsciously. Any repeating action that you don't think about is a hard-wired behavior. Some of them can be annoying, but others serve to make life much easier. And we can use these habits (because they are automatic) to help us remember the new actions we want to take.
The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine.

Mike Murdock

Firstly, make a quick list of some of the things that you do automatically every day. Most of these habits will be neutral. Tying our shoes, going to the bathroom, eating breakfast, getting dressed in the morning are good examples. However, if you can create a list the important things (the things that you are most conscious about not forgetting) all the better.

The idea is to associate a programmed activity with the new activity you wish to repeat daily. This association can be done by simply writing yourself a note and attaching it to the existing habit in some way. Actually, any visual trigger will do as long as it reminds you to take action.

For example, if you take medication or vitamins faithfully every day, this would be an excellent trigger activity to associate with your new activity. You could write your new activity on a brightly colored piece of paper and tape it to the medicine or vitamin bottle.

If you have a dog that you walk every day, you could attach a reminder to its leash. In this case, you might not want to have a note hanging from the leash, but any appropriate symbol would do the trick. Also, your dog is likely to pester you for its walk, creating a built-in secondary reminder. The same goes for feeding pets. Put your reminder on a sticky note and keep it on the can of cat food.

If you have trouble remembering to take your medications or vitamins, you can use this same method to remind yourself to take them after you feed your pet.

There are thousands of daily habits that we can attach new ones to. Find one that coincides with a time that you would like to work on your new activity, and create a visual reminder that works for you. Let your existing habits help you create new empowering ones. Let your existing routines remind to work on your goals.

Now, all you have to remember is to try this idea out. It may seem simple but it really works. And after 4-5 weeks, you won't need to use it any more because your new habit will be hard-wired!

Having trouble remembering to say your affirmations?

Our new Affirm Your Life App is a brilliant solution. You can save any affirmation or quote from the app as a Favorite. And then you can set a reminder to send them to you every 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 12, or 24 hours. You can also set any individual page as an Alert, which can be scheduled for a specific time and repeated every day, weekday, or week!

Now what could be easier than that!


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