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Microhabits – Doable Tiny Changes That Make a Huge Difference

Stretching before running is a microhabit that makes a difference.Change… you want it desperately, but at the same time it overwhelms you. How can you overcome your resistance to change? Sometimes it has to do with the size of change. If you’re willing to mindfully make tiny changes every day, you’ll obtain and surpass your wildest dreams – that’s what microhabits (some people spell it micro habits or micro-habits) are all about! 

In order to make big changes in life, there are two truths we accept:

  1. It takes time, perhaps even years, to obtain big goals. Is this a hard change for you? Then you’ve identified an area of thinking you can do some work on.
  2. You’ll be most successful, if you perform tiny changes or microhabits when you feel fresh and strong. For many people, morning is their best time.

To get you started, here are some examples of microhabits you can use to mindfully transform your life:

Embrace rejection. If you don’t try, you’ll miss out on so many wonderful opportunities. Try this microhabit: every day reach out to someone you’d like to work with, even if you’re certain they won’t respond. You have nothing to lose, if you don’t take rejection personally.

Start living your dream now. If you dream of being a writer, your microhabit might be writing one paragraph a day. If you dream of running a marathon, your microhabit could be running an extra 1/8th mile or 10 minutes each day. You’ll either find out that dream is not for you, or you’ll start building momentum toward living your dream. 

Track your spending. Create a greater awareness of money in/money out and time in/time out. You spend a big chunk of your life acquiring money, so it’s important to spend it in a way that supports the needs and wants of your future self over current ones. A microhabit might be tracking how much you spend on takeout or coffee; or only allow yourself 1 hour of TV per week.

Conserve your resources. Rather than purchasing something new, use or repurpose something you have. A tiny change could be mix, match and accessorize your clothes in new ways, so you don’t have to buy a new outfit.

Delight in maintaining yourself. Your mind, body and spirit need to be nurtured. View these activities as delights, not as necessary evils! Healthful food (eat one more serving of veggies and drink one more glass of water), restorative sleep (go to bed ½ hour earlier), invigorating exercise (add 5 more minutes daily), continuous learning (read during lunch break) are microhabits to improving these life essentials. Why not take my 7-Point Wellness Assessment and see how you’re doing in these areas?

Control your emotions. Before reacting to a situation, a new tiny habit would be to pause and assess its affect on your emotions by asking: “Why do I feel this way?”

Create an energy-stimulating environment. Clutter causes distress to our brains. Say “No” to people and things that don’t attract good energy. A new microhabit might be unsubscribing from physical magazines or online newsletters you never read; unfollowing people on Facebook; or filing that pile of papers on your desk.

Read more – scroll less. Reading engages your brain in a way that watching TV never can. (Click here to find some of my favorite books.) When you’re tired, a new microhabit might be taking a nap or going for a walk instead of channel surfing or scrolling through social media feeds.

Push yourself. Too often, our minds hold us back. When I’m doing my CrossFit, my mind gives out before my body does. I never would have known this, if I hadn’t learned to push myself. A new microhabit could be that you force yourself to do five minutes of whatever activity you need to do, even if you don’t “feel like it!” Then five minutes more…

Act on your good ideas. There are a few seconds between coming up with a great idea and when your brain kicks in and shoots it down. Learn to assess your ideas and take action quickly. A new tiny habit could be writing all of your ideas down and finish this sentence: “This is a great idea because…”

As you review this list you probably noticed, there’s a big difference between “living for the moment” (like attacking a big bag of chips) and “living in the moment” (mindfully extracting joy from each moment, knowing it supports the change you want to make).

Why not start identifying microhabits that will make a huge difference in your life? If you’d like an accountability partner, I’d love to help! Please contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype).

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