Today we are breaking down the strategy of Habit Pairing in order for you to help improve yourself, build better habits, and achieve more success!
Habit pairing is the process of taking on habit and piggybacking another habit onto it. For example, a lot of people like to take their favorite TV show, so maybe your a Game of Thrones aficionado of some sort. Instead of letting themselves get in the habit of sitting on the couch and watching 1 or 2 episodes of Game of Thrones on the couch, they will only allow themselves to watch the show while they are at the gym exercising. So now while they enjoy their favorite show they are also getting all the benefits of exercising!
Another example of habit pairing is using a bad habit and combine it with an ideal habit, a habit that you want to have. Let’s say you want to lose weight and so you chose to build better habits to do this.
For me, I have had this awful habit of snacking late at night. Let’s be real, it is way too damn easy to start wandering around your kitchen and munching away at whatever is easiest to get your hands on. To deal with this, I started to introduce the ideal habit of Intermittent Fasting.
Intermittent fasting is an amazing diet style for tons of reasons that I won’t get into here but the main aspect of it consists of only allowing yourself to eat during a specific 8 hour period every day. I have set this 8 hour time period during the intervals of 10AM and 6 PM effectively eliminating all of my awful snacking habits because it is apart of the 2 rules of when I can start to eat and when I can no longer eat.
As you can see, there are three columns, the first column consists of your bad habits, the second is your good habits, and third is your ideal habits. Simply take some time, reflect, brainstorm, and fill in the three columns to the best of your ability. When you start to fill in one column, other ideas for other columns start to come up as well, so don’t stress if it takes you a little bit to get an idea for a specific column!
You can see in the picture above the list of bad habits, good and ideal habits that I had brainstormed on in order to start implementing habit pairing.
Now, with all of this laid out, I decided to utilize the bad habit of my lack of structure in my morning routine. I started by observing my own morning routine which essentially consisted of waking up, taking my dog out to pee, making a cup of coffee, and then aimlessly wandering around the house asking myself, “now what the hell do I do”?
So, now I crossed off the “morning routine has 0 structure” under my bad habits because that is where I began to structure this habit pairing. Now below the chart under cue (remember, a habit is made up of a cue, something that triggers you to take an action, the action, what you actually do, and the reward, what you get out of it), I wrote, “wake up” because that is when this habit will begin.
Next, I decided that upon waking up, I will read a minimum of 20 pages prior to having my cup of coffee allowing me to then cross of “I don’t read as much as I would like” off of the list.
I am then left with three things, the bad habit of lack of physical activity, and the ideal habits of getting exercise daily and having a dedicated time to learning new information for my business, every day.
What I decided to do next is to pair all three of those up and here is how.
After my cup of coffee I will go to the gym for a minimum of 45 minutes. During this time, while I am walking on the treadmill, I will be using my iPad to be online learning new material, working through the courses in the private membership community, Screw The 9-5, to have that dedicated time to learn new information for my business, daily.
To sum it all up, through this pairing, I have been able to eliminate the bad habits of lack of physical activity, the lack of structure in my morning, and not reading as much as I would like to, and then able to move the ideal habits of daily exercise and dedicated time to learning new information for my business into the good habit category.
With the plan structured and laid out, I am able to start to execute on these plans and achieve my goals of improving myself through the simple, yet powerful strategy of habit pairing!
Click on the link below to download your own template for habit pairing, begin brainstorming, filling in the chart, and planning on how you can integrate and pair some of these habits up to start making improvements in your life.
Success is only a couple of clicks away so take the steps now, take action today, and let us know if you need any help along the way!
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