10 Healthy Habits That Will Actually Change Your Life
“Yоur bеliеfѕ becomes уоur thоughtѕ
Yоur thоughtѕ bесоmеѕ уоur words
Yоur words bесоmеѕ уоur асtiоnѕ
Yоur actions becomes your habits
Yоur hаbit bесоmеѕ уоur vаluеѕ
Yоur vаluеѕ bесоmеѕ уоur destiny” – Mаhаtmа Gаndhi
Everyone yearns for an improvement and there is need for it.
From careers to personal relationships. Everywhere you turn, there is need for things to get better.
Central to things getting better, is the way things are done. How you speak, treat others, handle your personal stuff etc, carries a lot of weight. These things soon define you and eventually define your life.
As a result, your life is nothing but a reflection of the things you do.
“You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” – John C. Maxwell
The habits you drop should be those you have realized cause you not to move forward. Those which prevent you from achieving your life’s goals.
Here are some of the most common anti-progress habits many people have. If none of these is an issue for you, then take some time and reflect on your own life.
If there is something you usually do which affects your progress in life, that’s what you need to deal with.
7 COMMON BAD HABITS YOU SHOULD DROP
Whereas these negative habits are not the only ones which hinder people from success, they are certainly among the most common.
Many struggle against them with little success. And in the worst cases, those affected by them are not even aware of what is eating them up.
Familiarize yourself with these. Examine yourself to see whether these are a part of your life then decide to put in the effort to change them.
Bad Habit 1: Multitasking
Multitasking is widely hailed as a great measure of productivity and many believe so.
Probably taking the cue from computers, people often try to improve their multitasking skills in an effort to become better.
If you are a proponent of multitasking, you need to know that your brain is not good at multitasking. This has been proven by science.
Although exercising and stretching your brain to do more difficult duties is good for it, focusing on one task is better. This way, your efforts will result in a higher-quality output.
Bad Habit 2: Saying “YES” to everything (or everyone)
This is closely related to multitasking. When you say “yes” to every request, you are setting yourself up for failure. Or at the very least, a multitasking session.
Agreeing to everyone’s requests and demands will stretch you so thin that you won’t have the ability to deliver.
The deadlines will soon approach and the reality of not being successful will suddenly dawn on you.
This can be a harsh reality and your mind will kick into overdrive. You may find yourself enjoying this particular ride since it’s powered by adrenaline.
When adrenaline kicks in, it will be as though you have pressed the turbo switch.
You will indeed act fast, think fast, probably deliver on time. But if this is the trend, you will actually be setting yourself up for some rough rides ahead.
Not that you will be well placed to overcome the rough terrain. You will actually be operating through burnout.
Bad Habit 3: Procrastination
This is very common and troublesome too. It’s possible that everyone suffers from procrastination at one point in their lives. Maybe even the successful battle it once in a while.
But for some, it’s really a cancer. The diagnosis comes late and the fight seems more like a lost battle.
There is a connection with the above-mentioned scenario of adrenaline-rushed living.
When you adapt the life of operating under the influence of adrenaline, it becomes a drug of sorts. You crave the “joy” of working fast.
Delivering within self-imposed tight deadlines. You may even become known for it.
But where exactly are you going with this?
You get a task which needs 2 hours to work on. You look at it then decide you can do it in 30 minutes. You spend your time on other things until you have 30 minutes then start working on it.
Can you see where this is going?
It will become the norm for you to postpone doing anything simply because you can do it later.
In any case, haven’t you proven that you always do it fast?
This is a conducive environment for laziness to develop.
Soon enough, you will find that the backlog is too much for you.
Yet laziness won’t just walk away. You’ll have to chase it away. And that’s where the struggle comes in.
Bad Habit 4: Following Your Inner Critic
We all have an inner critic. That guy or girl whose voice is ever so present in our minds. Your inner critic is really a part of you and you cannot separate yourself from him.
But one thing you certainly can do is silence him.
If you take some time and critically look at what he says, you will realize it doesn’t fall into the category of correction called constructive criticism.
His version is purely toxic, thus a hindrance to your success. If you allow him to reign supreme, then you will never have a success story.
How do you recognize your inner critic?
Here are a few characteristics he cannot manage to hide:
- He is always negative – your inner critic specializes in speaking negatively. None of his advice will ever leave you feeling good about yourself. He will instill irrational fears into you and leave you feeling inadequate and helpless.
- He focuses on your weaknesses – everyone has strengths and weaknesses. But your inner critic seems to be blind to your strengths. But your weaknesses? He has a trained eye for them and always relishes in pointing them out to you. Especially when you need to move past them.
- His suggestions intend to make you comfortable – every suggestion given by your inner critic will seek to keep you comfortable. According to him, you would rather watch a movie than clean the house. Read some more about successful people but not take action like they did.
- He is always against doing something new – you want to do something new that promises a better version of you? Your inner critic is watching your every move. Just start moving and there he goes. He will give you all the reasons why you shouldn’t do it.
If you intend to make changes to your life, then this is one of the first things to handle. You have to learn how to silence that voice.
You do this first of all by ignoring it then secondly deliberately going against it.
You just have to make the hard decision that you are going to reject all of your inner critic’s advice.
The moment you feel like doing something you know is good, go straight into it.
Don’t even think much about it. As the sports label Nike says, Just Do It.
Bad Habit 5: Pursuing Perfection
This is another troublesome issue though it’s not the majority who suffer from it. But for those under the spell of perfectionism, theirs is a terrible master.
Perfectionism will demand that you do things perfectly. And who gets to decide when it’s perfectly done? Perfectionism itself.
In short, you are not in control. And will never be.
Want to start exercising? Perfectionism says you have no enough equipment. You decide to go to the gym where there are equipment? You have no gym clothes. If you buy these?
You need to find out what time is best. How much time is best. Find the best gym. Analyze the gym instructors etc etc etc.
There is always something to do. You have to make sure everything is perfect before taking action. And when you finally take action, every step must be the perfect step.
Do you really have the ability and energy to ensure everything works out perfectly? Perfectionism is nothing but bondage.
Bad Habit 6: Lack of Action
You may have read a lot of books. Maybe even watched or attended motivational talks. You feel the urge within you to go out and conquer the world.
You have been convinced that you have what it takes. And yes you do. So why don’t you conquer the world?
Inaction is a serious threat to progress. It’s a cousin to procrastination.
Wherever inaction rules, there will be procrastination. And another problem might also be lurking in the shadows—laziness.
When someone is lazy, he rarely does any work. Failing to do school assignments, work on career projects, seek knowledge etc.
Any time that someone is choosing not to do work, or take action, there is potential for laziness.
For you to move forward, you have to make up your mind to take action.
Bad Habit 7: Always Taking the Easy Path
As you take action, another hurdle lies ahead. Which path will you take?
In the journey of life, there are often different paths available for you to take. Many times, we tend to take the path of least resistance. Why?
Many arguments can be made to justify this. One may be the cost-benefit analysis you carried out. As good and wise as such analyses are, they are not always the best for your personal life journey.
Life has its ups and downs and as is commonly known, only the strong go beyond barriers.
These strong people are the ones we admire as successful. However, in most cases, we don’t know what they did or went through in order to overcome the obstacles we didn’t overcome.
The answer is usually simple: they trained themselves. They envisioned the obstacles and decided to develop themselves so as to be able to overcome.
This training is not easy. It takes determination. It requires consistency and persistence. If you are in the habit of taking the easy path, you’ll never go past obstacles.
You will not have stretched yourself beyond your current self in order to be able to overcome.
When you encounter an obstacle demanding more than you currently have, you will likely stop your journey.
10 HEALTHY HABITS
With the above habits and others like them safely out of your way, you can easily adapt a winning strategy. All you have to do is consistently implement these habits.
Take note that you have to be very intentional about his.
Also, you cannot wait till you feel like taking action. If you intend to move forward, schedule the action and do it.
If the action is not one to be scheduled, then at the moment of spontaneity, just do it.
Healthy Habit 1: Cut Down on Technology
Technology is a very good thing. It helps us simplify life and make things more convenient.
But that same technology has profound effects if not kept under control.
For example, when is the last time you spent quality time with your kids at home? With your next-door neighbor? Will you be surprised when you get some shocking news about these people?
You might be having a family WhatsApp group where you can chat and get to know where everyone is. You might be having a neighborhood Facebook page where issues relating to your neighborhood are discussed.
You might know when your neighbor’s daughter is getting married, going to college or even when she got her first child. But how well do you really know her?
Humans are social beings and interactions are necessary for our lives. In the busy life we now live, technology has provided a means of contacting each other.
But that same technology has opened the door for may other problems.
For instance, consider the below statistics on the effects of social media on teens. Despite the term “social” in the name, they are increasingly becoming anti-social.
Technology should not replace face-to-face conversations.
Always seek to physically spend time with people. And if you have children, train them to do the same.
Healthy Habit 2: Read Books
It is very wise to trade social media with book reading.
Although you can read through the Kindle or other similar devices, just try a physical printed book. The Kindle can however still work.
There is one big reason why we advocate for reading printed books. The light from TV and electronic devices affects you at night.
That aside, reading books has been documented to provide several benefits. These include:
1. Vocabulary Expansion
Reading gives you access to many words. As opposed to watching videos, reading helps you interact primarily with words and not images. This interaction builds up your mind in a big way.
There’s the learning of words you wouldn’t otherwise have known.
Since you’re reading a narration, you get to understand what the words mean by considering the context of the narration. And the more words you know, the more eloquent you become.
2. Improved Concentration
Reading a book requires a high level of concentration. You need to follow through with the information presented. This pushes your mind to focus on the text you’re reading.
If you don’t read often, you might find it difficult to understand texts.
Especially if reading a story with a complicated plot. But soon enough, if you continue, your mind will pick up the ability you require of it. Your mind seeks to serve you and so it will improve accordingly.
3. Improved Memory
When you read long texts, you always need to remember what came before what you’re reading now. If it’s a novel and you’re in chapter 4, you have to remember what was in chapter 1.
Consistent reading will therefore improve your memory.
Healthy Habit 3: Have a Winning Attitude
Life is a journey, but it’s also a battle. Life is full of opportunities, but obstacles exist too.
With success being progressive, you can never experience it in the least of ways if you won’t fight for it.
If you have seen soldiers train or prepare to go to battle, there are words they always say. The same applies to football teams and others who are going into a competition.
These words which they shout are like a rallying call. They remind them that they are there to win.
At that point, all concerns are to be set aside. Unpaid bills, children sent away from school for lack of fees, a sick child, whatever it is. Every distraction is to be set aside.
The idea is that after the successful completion of the “battle,” there will be time to sort everything else.
A winning attitude is one thing which separates the winners from the losers.
Winners always get themselves to see the victory ahead. Losers see the potential loss ahead. Whatever you see might as well be what you’ll get.
Healthy Habit 4: Exercise
You cannot expect to have a better life if you neglect your body. Your body is like a casing. It is not the real you but what is seen on the outside as you.
You consist mainly of what is inside you. What is within you is what really identifies who you are.
Things like character, ideologies, belief systems, values and the like, are what define you.
And these are what make you valuable to others. Although people may like you for your body shape, they will only love you for who you are on the inside.
But your body is important too. It’s the house where your emotions, thoughts etc live in. It is also what carries you from point A to point B.
And if you neglect it enough, it falls apart through deteriorated health and disease. At this point, not only will you suffer, but so will those close to you.
What does exercising do?
For starters, your health will be strengthened. Better health means you can enjoy life some more. Exercises result in a stronger body.
This means you can do more while still maintaining your strength. A stronger body also means that you can give yourself to demanding tasks quite comfortably.
This is made possible by the fact that exercises benefit both body muscles and the mind.
And what’s more, exercises raise your self-esteem. You definitely know the benefits of high self-esteem, right?
Healthy Habit 5: Be Grateful (Always)
Ever helped someone with something then they said “Thank you?” You must have felt good since being appreciated makes us feel valuable. This is part of being human.
If being appreciated made you feel good, then you can experience much positive change by giving appreciation. Not only will this make the other person feel good about himself, it also has an impact on you.
When you appreciate someone, you are essentially acknowledging that they have done something good. When the person receives it, they feel good knowing they are valued.
On your part, you have just recognized the other person’s value.
If you get to value people, you will see more of their good side. This makes them want to give you more of that side and not only to you, but others as well.
You will therefore have increased the number of people acting right and being good to others. This means a better world.
And there is more.
When you get used to recognizing the good in people and acknowledging it, your perspective of life changes.
You’ll start loving people because you know they have something good in them, even though you haven’t experienced it yet.
This changes your attitude and makes it easy to make new friends.
With an abundance of friends who appreciate your love for them, you can be sure of help when you need it.
You will also have increased the number of advisors available to give you genuine and relevant assistance when needed.
Healthy Habit 6: Show Yourself Some Love
Are you too busy to show yourself some love? Are you one of those people who don’t even have time to give yourself a treat?
That is not the way to go. If machines need time to undergo maintenance, what about human beings?
The underlying problem here is one: you don’t value yourself.
The journey to self-love starts at self-acceptance. Self-acceptance does not mean ignoring things you can improve on.
Rather, it means knowing who you are and what makes you unique. We are all different and that’s a good thing.
Your uniqueness is what you’ll be celebrating and valuing.
This uniqueness is what makes you required in this world. If you don’t feel needed anywhere, then it’s probably because you’re in the wrong place. Or are hanging out with the wrong people.
But don’t focus on that. Find out what makes you unique. You can ask some friends or family and embrace what they tell you. Once you get this, you will start doing the things you love.
You will develop those aspects of your life and become better. Meaning more distinctly unique and valuable.
Healthy Habit 7: Eat Healthy
There is a somewhat funny saying among some people that the body is not made of wood.
This is always given as a reason—perhaps an excuse—for eating more than what one is expected to consume.
Though that might be a case of justifying a wrong habit, there is a truth in the statement itself. Your body is not made of wood, stone or metal. It’s made of bones, tissues and blood.
These things need sustenance from nutrients which come from food.
As such, though you eat, you are better off eating health meals. If snacking, get a healthy snack.
If thirsty, use water and not processed fruit juice. If you want juice, make natural juice at home. This way, you will avoid chemical preservatives and get the full nutritional value of the fruit itself.
Coming to food, it’s quite basic. Unless you are on a specific diet as advised by a doctor, eat a balanced diet.
This is as simple as ensuring there are carbs, proteins, vegetables and some fruits in your meals.
Good sources of proteins are lean beef, chicken breast (without skin) and beans. This is especially if you are voiding fat.
Eggs are also a good source though they have some fat. The best carbs come from whole grains as well as nuts.
Any green vegetable will take care of your vitamins needs. When you add fruits to this, your health is well taken care of.
Healthy Habit 8: Avoid Debt
Debt is a huge problem. Not just individuals, some governments have debt problems too.
You mainly borrow to facilitate development. At least most of the time. But what happens when you somehow can’t repay the borrowed money on time? Governments get into this situation too.
Fortunately for governments, they have a somewhat easy way out. If push comes to shove, they may increase taxes so as to get more money to repay loans. What about you?
There is no way you will force your customers to pay more than they should. You can’t force your employer to pay you more than he decides. You cannot force your bank to stop mortgage deductions.
You can however take a different route. You can avoid getting into debt.
Debt may not be completely avoidable but you can certainly keep it to a minimum. And if you are determined, you can avoid it altogether.
Depending on your outlook of life, you can commit to live a minimalist life. You can also decide to live below your means so you have monthly savings. These can later translate into investment money.
The problem with debt is that it leads to stress, especially if it becomes difficult to pay. If you are living a stress-free life, you have more joy and peace of mind. And these are key ingredients of a better life.
Healthy Habit 9: Stay Organized
You may be as busy as a bee. Or as lazy as Ludham’s dog that leaned his head against the wall to bark.
The bottom line is that you have things to do. One way to make it easier to be productive is by staying organized.
This can be as simple as just arranging your desk at work. It can also be as simple as taking 10 minutes in the morning to plan your day.
Organizing your work or the planned activities goes a long way. You get to lose less time and are able to stay focused. With every minute or hour passing, you can gauge your progress and know where things stand.
Organizing your life can also be made unnecessarily complicated. You just have to complicate things in your mind and it will reflect on your life.
Believe that it will take you a lot of time to plan for the day’s activities. That you will work on tasks as they come. That small activities like making your bed are not important.
The overall effect is that seeing these things stay disorganized, your start feeling out of control. You start seeing how you have a lot of work to do.
And nothing is getting finished. Suddenly, you have no time to spend with your family or friends.
If you instead chose to be be organized, the benefits are many. You will realize that some tasks are so small that you are encouraged to do them.
You’ll see how huge tasks can be broken down and worked on with relative ease. You’ll be able to time yourself as you work and discover that you’re efficient.
Choose to stay organized and see your life change for the better. You will become more productive and have time for something very important: rest.
Healthy Habit 10: Have Enough Rest
You need to relax and rest. This is not just something you want to do. It is something you need to do.
During sleep for example, your body works to repair damaged body cells. You are being replenished for the following day’s activities. It is like taking a car for servicing so that it can serve you better.
To facilitate good sleep, you have to make provision for the same in your lifestyle.
Some of the things to do include avoiding TV and your smartphone before bedtime and even switching off lights when sleeping. Keep your bedroom well ventilated and keep the temperatures close to body temperature.
Making improvements is not an impossible task. It just requires a decision and determination. Both these are within your reach.
They are within your control. Decide today that you want to change your life and press into the change.
You get to work on a Monday morning and as you prepare to get busy, a colleague passes by your desk, …