Don't Make Resolutions; Create Habits

By Toni Buffa | Published January 18, 2023

TL; DR

too long; didn't read

Rather than limiting yourself to making resolutions, it is essential to create habits. Formulating a specific habit and establishing a routine will help you achieve your goals faster than just making a promise to yourself. Creating habits is the key to achieving success and improving your life.

 

Most of us make new resolutions every year to improve our lives. This is partly why January is so full of expectations. But why limit yourself to making resolutions when you can create habits? This will help you achieve your goals faster than just making a promise.

Understanding the Difference Between a Resolution and a Habit

A resolution is a promise you make to yourself to improve your life. On the other hand, a habit is an action that is performed repeatedly to achieve a desired result. Habits are much more effective than resolutions. The fact that patterns are performed repeatedly ensures that a person will keep working towards their goals.

Formulating a Habit

Most people vaguely formulate their resolutions. For example, a person may say they want to be healthier, but that is not a realistic goal. To form a habit, it is essential to formulate specific goals. This means a person must define the behavior they want to develop and set a schedule to carry it out.

Some habits you might not even know you have are making a pot of coffee before work each morning and turning off your computer at 5 o'clock after work. A strategy you can also use when formulating habits is habit stacking. This method helps you to form habits that boost productivity and uses existing routines to help build new ones to reach the next level.

So, what does habit stacking look like in action? Clear developed a formula:

After/Before [Current Habit], I will [NEW HABIT].

So, using that formula, some examples of habit stacking might include:

  • After I drink my morning coffee, I will walk outside for a 10-minute walk.
  • Before I check social media, I will set a five-minute timer to remind me to return to my more productive work.
  • After I shut down my computer at the end of the workday, I will turn off notifications on my Teams and email.

Establishing a Routine

Once a habit has been established, it is essential to create a routine to ensure it is followed. This means setting a schedule to perform the activity in question. For example, if a person wants to start reading a book weekly, they must establish a plan to read and commit to it! Aim to achieve a personal or professional goal for 21 days. After 21 days, it should become a habit. Keep doing it for another 90 days, and it will become part of your lifestyle.

Rather than limiting yourself to making resolutions, it is essential to create habits. Formulating a specific habit and establishing a routine will help you achieve your goals faster than just making a promise to yourself. Creating habits is the key to achieving success and improving your life.


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Toni Buffa

Toni is a member of the Integrify marketing team and writes for the Integrify blog. Toni lives in Colorado and loves animals of all stripes.

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