How to Create the Right Resolutions and Maintain a New Habit: Part 2

It’s a season for change. We recently started a new year, so it’s only natural that many people want to start new habits. But why does time have to dictate when we make these changes to better our selves or pursue what we love? We touched on this in last week’s blog when I presented eight tips to help you make and stick to your goals. This week I have six more for you that should make this season of change transition to your new lifestyle.

Focus on the new habit

If you were told that you end up steering the bike where your eyes go when learning to ride, this is very true when it comes to habits. You steer your actions where your focus lies. If you are focused on your career more than your husband, then your time and attention will go into fueling that goal more than the others you have set. It’s also not just about focusing your energy on that new habit or goal, but about learning everything there is to know about what you want to achieve. If you want to eat healthier not only will you put time and energy into working out and eating right, but one needs to research the most effective methods and tools for going about such an undertaking. Not only can it help you achieve your goals, but it can also keep up your drive and one might even accomplish that goal in a shorter timeframe.

Anchor your new habit to an old one

Now, this doesn’t necessarily work with all things, but it is quite effective if your modifying behavior. One example might be if every couple of hours you go outside for a cigarette you leave to drink a bottle or water instead. The old habit is leaving the room and getting some well deserved “you time.” But instead of satiating your nicotine fix you substitute it with a healthy behavior that will reinforce feelings or pride and thoughts of determination.

Taking small steps will not only increase the likelihood you will stick to your new habit, but it will also make you feel empowered.

Take small steps

This was touched on earlier, but it is so important that it needs to be reiterated. Take baby steps. You are one person and although your passion for change is something to be admired one can easily be discouraged if you bite off more than you can chew. Taking small steps will not only increase the likelihood you will stick to your new habit, but it will also make you feel empowered. For every small transformation, you make it will reinforce your feelings of happiness as it relates to that new change in your life. This will fuel you and give you a burst of motivation to continue making small measurable positive steps towards your goal.

Make a plan

Making a plan of action is a great way to stay on target. I suggesting writing it down and keeping it readily accessible to remind you of where you are going and the stride that you made. Also when making this roadmap keep a plan in mind if there are potholes. Not everything will work out, and there will be obstacles to your growth. Make an option B or C so you don’t have an excuse to throw the new transformation out the window. Plus thinking this out will cut back on the emotional distress when an obstacle presents itself.

A therapist will help remove negative or unhealthy cognitions or emotional triggers that can get in the way of some lasting progress.

Be Accountable

People are often more consistent in new behaviors when they have to report or be held accountable by others. Friends and loved ones are normally go-to’s for this. However, if possible I would suggest a therapist or life coach. These experts are clinically trained in the best motivating interventions and tactics for change. Plus we tend to be more empathetic with effective communication skills that make the missteps a little easier to process. Also, a therapist will help remove negative or unhealthy cognitions or emotional triggers that can get in the way of some lasting progress.

Reward yourself

Stop and celebrate or appreciate how far you have come. When individuals start the journey of change they are often very regimented and focused which is great for developing a new habit but terrible when it comes to having fun. With all the tasks, to-dos and schedules in life it is easy to forget our successes. So reward yourself. Have a little fun and let you your hair down whether you think you did something to deserve it or not. Just take a break for fun.

Evolution of self is a very powerful and difficult act, but it is an act of love for yourself or others that you won’t soon forget. You are worthy of change and the deep feelings of transformation will elevate your life and those around you. As therapists, we constantly try to promote transformation and relish in that moment when a client is progressing. It is our act of service and let’s be honest it makes us feel good to know that we have helped in some small way. Let us be of service to you on your journey. We at CWC help provide effective tools for change, techniques to build, and accountability to ensure lasting success. If you’re interested in knowing more or scheduling an appointment call 470.296.090 or email us at chantel@chantelcohen.com.

Become One Again!

-Chantel Cohen

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