How do you set up a good habit and anchor it?
Changing certain habits in your life is not usually complicated. It is anchoring the new habits that is more challenging.
That is why Tal Ben-Shahar, who taught positive psychology at Harvard for many years, proposes this method called the 3Rs of change to introduce changes into our lives and anchor them:
- Reminders: We handle so many things in our lives that we tend to forget. Setting up a reminder will make it easier to remember the change (add a note in the calendar, plan a notification on the screen, wear a bracelet, etc.).
- Repetition: Establishing regularity will help anchor the change. For example, think about your day with gratitude every evening.
- Ritual: Ritualizing a change will help our brain to associate this moment with a habit. In fact, we need to reinforce certain neuronal pathways that are less frequently used. Setting up rituals will help. For example, choosing to meditate a few minutes before bedtime.
As a personal example, I couldn't manage to do yoga regularly and it frustrated me. I kept putting it off until later in the day and didn't have the courage to do it in the evening.
I chose to set aside time in the morning after waking up and having a light snack to do it. And for over a year now, I've been practicing traditional yoga on my own, between 4 and 5 days a week.
As you can see, it is all about establishing a certain discipline at home, in a flexible instead of rigid manner. Flexibility guarantees self-love and self-awareness, whereas rigidity supports biased beliefs and values.
Small changes applied consistently can make a big difference in your life. Trust yourself!
NB. Picture by Prophsee Journals on Unsplash