While we’re all on the quest for self improvement, it’s important to know that it’s possible to achieve it. Improving your writing, lifting heavier weights at the gym, or meditating longer.
What makes this all so difficult is that it’s possible to just revert back to all the tendencies you’ve made that weren’t productive. Really making the concept of always improving every day more difficult.
I do a lot of different things out of enjoyment and to make a living, you’re probably like that as well or at least you want to be. The thing is though, is mastering many areas in life might actually be counterintuitive.
Too Many Good Intentions
If you want a lot of good habits and continually have them then you need to keep at it every time. Now how does one go about that?
Psychology research has found out how we should follow our goals:
You’re actually more likely to stick with habits if you have a specific plan of when and where you’ll do them. If you fill out the sentence: “During the next week, I will partake in at least 20 minutes of vigorous exercise on [DAY] at [TIME OF DAY] at/in [PLACE].
Researches says people who do this were more likely to accomplish what they were trying to do. This is through a implementation intentions because of how specific the planning is.
This has been proven and repeated in many studies across all habits. It helps go to the gym, eat healthier, and even stop smoking.
But the caveat is it only works on one habit at a time.
That’s a big reason why a lot of people can’t change their lifestyle just like that. Researches say you’re most likely not going to succeed if you do more than one at a time.
So it’s important for me to say again: Developing a plan to stick with what, where, and how you’ll do it will increase the odds of how you actually follow through and makes thing happen.
What Happens When You Focus on One Thing
When when creating a habit it takes a lot mental power to keep it before it turns into an automatic thought process.
Researchers have called this as a “automaticity”. The ability to perform an action without thinking about the process.
But it only happens when there’s a lot of repetition and practice. The more you so it the easier it gets.
The most important thing to consider is that there’s a maximum on when habits happen automatically. The amount of time it requires to build. Habit it always the same due to frequencies and difficulty.
Researchers say it takes about 66 days for a habit to be formed. But that’s over a widely behavioral patterns in every day life so it can be a few months for it to all come to gather.
Change Your Life Without Changing Your Entire Life
The irony in it all though is that research is essentially about changing your life by not changing your life. It’s really one specific habit and then mastering it before you move on to another.
In the journey to mastery requires a focus only one thing at a time.