“Our character is basically a composite of our habits. Because they are consistent, often unconscious patterns, they constantly, daily, express our character.”
― Stephen Covey
Focus On Your Wins
One of my favorite hobbies is rock climbing, which consists of two types: bouldering and rope-climbing.
To have a good balance of technique, endurance and stamina, I incorporate both into my weekly workouts.
For rope-climbing, there are two types: top-rope and lead-climb.
For the ladder, there are quickdraws along the face of the rock wall that I need to clip to with my rope as I climb. This is mandatory for safety reasons in case I fall before reaching the next anchor.
After I clip in at each designated site, I gain a small victory. As I steadily make my way up, I will eventually get to the top.
Once I reach the peak, I hook myself to the top point and slowly descend down with the help of my belay partner.
But before each climb, my ultimate goal is to finish the route and get to the summit. However, as I ascend, my only focus is to get to the next anchor.
By concentrating on the small and manageable tasks, I gain the momentum and confidence to reach the pinnacle.
That’s how I view every one of my goals. I break them down into achievable assignments which I can complete on a consistent basis. These small wins will add up to huge victories over time.
That’s the key to any substantial achievement as it requires patience and continuous dedicated effort.
To preserve and improve my existing results, I must constantly put in the necessary work and determination.
Start With Small and Manageable Changes
By definition, habit (negative or positive) is something you do on a regular basis. They include the following:
To form new patterns and to break old ones, you can start with small steps. By beginning with manageable tasks, you will build momentum and confidence to escalate into bigger assignments.
Take health for example.
If you want to improve your food choices, you can start by eliminating just one unhealthy selection from your diet. In addition, you can add one nutrient-dense vegetable such as broccoli.
As you feel better after eating healthy foods, you can make additional empowering changes.
As for exercise, if you have problems working out for one hour, aim to train for only five minutes. Once you reap the benefits of moving your body, you’ll want to extend your workouts. To be practical, you can start increasing the duration of your sessions thereafter with increments of an additional five minutes.
As you progress, you can build up your mental and physical strength to meet the sixty-minute mark.
With these incremental changes, you will slowly form new habits which are invigorating because they produce your desired results.
With positive outcomes, you’ll continue to reinforce those routines. Eventually, it will become second nature. You’ll know when you have reached this point because you would feel different if you don’t carry out those healthy patterns.
Your identity might be challenged if you don’t consistently implement your desires with action.
Healthy and Permanent Lifestyle
To make any new habit sustainable, you must know your deepest reason for doing it. This “why” must be strong and resolute for you to persevere despite the initial lack of results or slow progress.
Understand that the steady changes are hardly noticeable because you’re seeing them every day. But given enough time, you will see the significant advancement you have made.
For example, if you are exercising regularly and eating a sensible diet, you will lose weight over time. But you won’t be aware of the minuscule changes on a daily basis. However, if your friend who hasn’t seen you in six months, he can easily observe the difference in your physical appearance.
Why is that?
It’s because of the larger discrepancy in time of six months compared to yours of every day.
To have any substantial improvement, you must give the process time. That’s what it needs to have real lasting change.
The truth is this:
Nothing truly valuable comes easily.
And after you achieve your goals, it takes continuous practice for maintenance and further advancement.
To keep consistency, prioritize your day by spending five to ten minutes each night and write out your activities for the next day.
Put those must-dos on your calendar. This way you’ll know exactly what you need to do tomorrow.
Building new and lasting habits takes time and conscious effort. It’s a permanent lifestyle change.
This means you must implement the activities regularly.
But realize that you don’t have to be perfect all the time.
In moments of setback, acknowledge them. Then express self-love and compassion knowing that you’re taking the necessary steps towards creating a healthy practice.
Give yourself the time and space to accept the temporary hiccups. When you’re ready, get back on track.
To help you rekindle that desire to continue, ask yourself:
“How important is this to me?”
“Do I have a level ten commitment to making this happen?”
“What is my “why” for starting in the first place?”
With these questions, you will find the inspiration to persist and to create a sustainable habit.
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