Stop underestimating the power of building good habits. It is time to Learn to Build Habits & Achieve your Goals. I was there in that same place of skepticism when I felt like everything was out of control in my life. I’m not going to say that everything changed overnight or that I already have everything under control. I don’t believe in magic formulas or magic pills. Life doesn’t work like that and what works for me may not work for you, but the truth is that we are unique and individual beings and each of us has to evaluate what really works. Only you can know what works and what doesn’t, but you need to venture to do it and give it the necessary time to generate results.
I used to believe that I had good habits when actually, I was in reactive mode all the time. I didn’t have a plan, and my life felt totally random. But changes do not happen overnight. Changes generally come after a crisis and when we have no choice but to make a change.
Making changes and building good habits is a skill that is learned by doing. It’s not just about setting goals, it’s about actually meeting them. We have all filled pages with ideals that are no more than good intentions. It is about aligning our actions to achieve what we really want basing everything on good habits.
Tools to develop good habits
I have received many comments and questions about my illustrations and my digital coloring books. Today is my 111 day of daily practice. I started last year with my daily practice and I feel I have improved so much.
Creating good habits is the basis of any significant change. If you learn to Build Habits & Achieve your Goals you will be able to open more doors to grow. It is not about immediate changes, it is about staggering the power of change through consistency. I do not ask much about my practice, just 1 line per day. I usually go between 20 minutes to 1 hour every single day. But if I expect to do 1 hour I will for sure fail. I am pretty excited about this process. I am not in a hurry, I am just learning more about drawing and about habit building.
To achieve this, it is essential to have some basic tools, for example:
- FREE YOURSELF FROM FALSE EXPECTATIONS
- SET A REALISTIC GOAL
- MAKE IT TOO EASY NOT TO DO IT, STOP OVER-COMPLICATING EVERYTHING
- TRUST YOURSELF
- BE KIND AND PATIENT WITH YOURSELF
- KEEP TRACK OF YOUR PROGRES
1. FREE YOURSELF FROM FALSE EXPECTATIONS
The mind is always telling us unreal stories about who we are and what we can or cannot achieve. We have no more control over our life than in our daily actions and habits. In fact, with everything we’ve been through lately, it’s clear that having control over life is nothing more than a fallacy. The first step is to accept the actual starting point. Don’t lie to yourself and don’t overdo it. Be unbiased and find a realistic way to measure where you are and where you want to go.
Be as specific as you can. If your goal is to lose weight, start with finding out your current weight. You can make any kind of habits from eating healthier, reading more, going to bed early or watching less TV. No matter what it is, define your current state and then define your goal.
How many hours are you spending watching television?
How many times a week are you exercising?
How many times do you go to bed after 11pm?
How many books are you reading this year?
Determine exactly where you are and where you want to go. keep in mind that it is not about working miracles. Every goal requires work and time, so keep in mind that your final results will not appear tomorrow.
2. SET A REALISTIC GOAL
Understand that some things take a certain amount of time and you cannot speed up the process. Having a child takes about nine months, sometimes it can be done in 7 but it is rarely done in less.
Having a fit body also takes time, in some cases years of training. Aiming to achieve certain goals in very short periods of time is unrealistic. Get ready to do the job for as long as it may require and that time can range from months to years. Be patient and don’t give up, don’t lose sight of the goal, but make it realistic.
3. MAKE IT TOO EASY NOT TO DO IT, STOP OVER-COMPLICATING EVERYTHING
As soon as we face a difficult goal, our mind begins to make excuses for not achieving it. We don’t have time, there isn’t enough money, you don’t have the necessary preparation and a thousand more excuses.
If you stay at that level of complexity, you will never reach your goals, you need to simplify them to the most basic point possible.
We all want to be in shape but not all of us can or want to dedicate 4 hours a day to exercising. However, we can do 10 squats at some point during the day. The first example is the complication of our mind, the second is the greatest possible simplification.
If you want to learn more about a topic or field, you can go to university and study for several years, that’s not easy. The greatest possible simplification is to read a paragraph every day, you will be amazed at your speed of progress. Keep in mind the goal of keeping it as simple as possible. So it’s easier to do it than to lose it. This is the strategy to avoid sabotaging yourself with excuses.
4. TRUST YOURSELF
This is the hardest part of all, believe in yourself. Your mind, your mood, your daily commitments, problems and even your past experiences are ready to sabotage you. You have to have such a degree of confidence in yourself that it reaches the limits of stubbornness. Gabriel Garcia Marquez wrote page after page when he had no money and debts were piling up, he believed in himself.
Before releasing her album “Where are the thieves”, the label wanted to change Shakira’s musical rhythm, for something more commercial, she defended her music until she was successful.
Follow your heart, believe in what you are really passionate about, don’t give yourself the luxury of doubting yourself, there are already many doing that. Keep going, no one is going to do it for you, be loyal to your dream.
5. BE KIND AND PATIENT WITH YOURSELF
There will be too many downsides already on your way to success, so treat yourself kindly and sweetly. There will be criticisms, difficulties, obstacles, and problems, so, stop beating yourself.
Accept that you make mistakes and don’t judge yourself too harshly, learn from experiences and move on. Spend some time keeping your mind calm, to ward off anguish or sadness, meditate, go for a walk, enjoy an afternoon in the sun, any small prize will be very well received by your mind.
6. KEEP TRACK OF YOUR PROGRES
It doesn’t matter if we’re looking to lose weight, learn a new language, improve our social skills; it will take time for sure. It will not be achieved overnight and feeling far from the final goal can discourage us.
If you keep track of your path you can see how much progress you have made. Then you will know that you are a winner, even if you haven’t finished the job.
Keeping a record of your achievements reminds you where you were and everything you have achieved. Remember that it is the small actions that trigger the wonderful domino effect that we so desire.
Keep track of your progress. It will serve as a compass along the way to remind you of what is important and keep you on track even through tough times.
You can use trackers, planners, a calendar or just journals. It doesn´t matter. Track your journey.
All of these tools and mindset changes have helped me make significant changes in my life. I have also lost my peace and sabotaged myself many times. Every time I establish a new habit and eliminate one that does not contribute to me, I understand that everything is improving. Believe in yourself, set limits and take small steps that get you where you want to go. When we navigate life without a clear north, we may get where we did not want to go.
Tell me what you do to establish new habits or what is the most difficult part for you to achieve.