Let me start by saying that your present situation in life is a function of the habits you have cultivated. Will Durant (not Aristotle) said it best:
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
This is also true in the case of Mediocrity Which is pretty much the opposite of excellence. Mediocrity is a function of mediocre habits.
This implies that we can go from mediocrity to excellence and vice versa by simply working on our habits.
I hear somebody asking, how does it work? Before we get into that, I want to add more clarity to my statement: It is true that HABITS change your life, but it is NOT a guarantee for SUCCESS. Although the outcome some times could bring you not only a quality lifestyle but also a successful one. But you should also bear in mind that CORRECTIONS DOESN'T MEAN CAUSATION.
This point is best illustrated by Nassim Taleb who wrote this in his book, Fooled By Randomness:
“Hard work, showing up on time, wearing a clean (preferably white) shirt, using deodorant, and some such conventional things contribute to success—they are surely necessary and important but may be insufficient as they do not cause success.”
So as we talk about habits, outcomes are not the focus, we'll talk about changing our actual behaviour so as to improve the quality of our lives.
Now that we’ve gotten a clearer picture, I'll be showing us some process for making life-changing habits stick. I'll be dropping 2 steps then the remaining in my next post.
1st Step to a Healthy Habit:
You only know what habits you wish to keep.
In this first step, you have to decide on habits that are worth it. It won't be fruitful if I start talking about the habits I had to change to changed my life like I said that’s not helpful. This is so because only YOU can define what a good habit is. Deciding if a habit is worth cultivating to you is important in forming new habits.
You just got to ask yourself, “Will habit X give me what I desire and help improve the quality of my life?” A very necessary question, we need to tie our decisions to a reason, we all need something to change, real reasons not superficial.
When you know your reasons, you draw motivation from that and adopt habits that bring you closer to what you want in life.
2nd Step to a healthy habit:
Don't exhaust yourself with numerous habit practice, one habit at a time.
There is a habit I recently cultivated, I tried forming a daily reading habit for years but I wasn't successful. Many reasons were responsible for my failure, one of which is that I tried to form a million habits at the same time.
When you do too many things at the same time, you end up with chaos. It’s best to hold back the enthusiasm if you’re the same.
When you try to do a lot of things you always end up right back where you started. Sounds familiar? Yes, I've been there. I think the reason why we try to do a lot of things at once is that we overestimate ourselves. It's not possible to achieve a lot in a short period.
Stack one habit on top of the other, one by one. We can achieve A WHOLE LOT over a long period of time. You achieve more when you stay focus on one thing at a time.