Get Specific *
In the last two tips we discussed identifying a powerful reason for establishing a new habit, and shared several ways to create reminders so we remember to do what we intend. Now it’s time to look at the routine, the actual behaviors, in our new healthy habit. The more clarity we have about what we are attempting to do, the more likely we are to succeed.
Sit Tech to the Rescue
- Start Small.
- It’s easy to become discouraged when goals are too ambitious. For instance, if you want to establish the habit of power sitting, shoot for practicing once a day.
- Be clear about when and where you will practice. I will Power sit when I first sit down at my computer to work. Now write it down.
- Identify obstacles.
- Do you really want to do this? If you aren’t motivated, it’s not going to work. Be sure to pick a behavior that will help you achieve your larger goals for example feeling good at the end of the workday.
- What might keep you from achieving your goal? Time, money and attitude can all create roadblocks. Anticipate problems and brainstorm ways around them. If you don’t see ways to conquer roadblocks, you may need to find another goal that is a better fit.
- Set benchmarks.
- Identify how many times a day you want to practice your new habit during the first week, second week, etc.
- Use specific numbers and put it on your calendar so you can
- Track it! Yes, actually write down or record on an electronic device whether you are meeting benchmarks. A little plus next to your benchmarks is quick and effective. Why?
- This lets you measure your success and decide how much to challenge yourself by increasing the behavior.
- This also lets you know how well your plan is working and signals when you need to
- Review and Revise.
- Building a habit is a process. Each success and especially each failure give us more information to improve our chances of succeeding. Whether you succeed at meeting a benchmark or not, ask yourself Why? Use the information to revise your plan so you spend more time doing what works and less time doing what doesn’t.
- Be patient. Changing a habit can take months. Look for a tip on timing soon.
Sound like a lot of work? Once you get the hang of writing your goals, it will seem simple. And the payoff is that you can take charge of your life by building healthy
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We will be back next month with another tip for using posture, mindfulness, movement and habit formation to improve your health and your life.
* Always listen to your body. – If it hurts, don’t do it! – Consult with a health professional about performing any activities mentioned in these tips. Sit Tech does not offer medical advice and is not responsible for use of its tips.