Unhappy New Year?

Hi. Welcome to 2020, a new year a new decade. How about a new start? I know there were lots of posts New Year New Me. I even used it myself but if we are honest do we all start making the changes on the 1st of January. No of course not. Many don’t get up till midday and even then some have sore heads. So we lose the first then we get to the 2nd and we hit the shops or slump in front of the TV and so begins the pattern.

You can make changes whenever you want. In fact you can make the changes when you want to make them, not when someone tells you to make them. If you are fed up living the same life that you have been living then when you are ready make make small subtle changes, and once those changes happen and you accept them, then you can make bigger better changes.

How Long it Really Takes to Build a New Positive Habit

On average, it takes more than 2 months before a new behavior becomes automatic — 66 days to be exact. And how long it takes a new habit to form can vary widely depending on the behavior, the person, and the circumstances. In a study, it took anywhere from 18 days to 254 days for people to form a new positive habit. 

In other words, if you want to set your expectations appropriately, the truth is that it will probably take you anywhere from two months to eight months to build a new behavior into your life — not 21 days.

Before you let this dishearten you, let’s talk about three reasons why this research is actually inspiring. First, there is no reason to get down on yourself if you try something for a few weeks and it doesn’t become a habit. It’s supposed to take longer than that! There is no need to judge yourself if you can’t master a behavior in 21 short days. Learn to love you.

Second, you don’t have to be perfect. Making a mistake once or twice has no measurable impact on your long-term habits. This is why you should treat failure like a scientist, give yourself permission to make mistakes, and develop strategies for getting back on track quickly.

Changing the way you think.

Recognize That It’s All in Your Head. We can get a little far out with this, but it boils down to one thing-reality is what you make it to be. Every interaction, conversation, process, and personal thought that happens over the course of the day-both good and bad-plays out in your head as much as it plays out in reality. In the same vein, avoid “negative” content. This is not necessarily content that is violent, gory, or excessively sexual. Rather it’s “negative” because it doesn’t add anything to your life. You aren’t making yourself a better person by consuming nothing but poorly-written novels or bad summer movies. You’re just coasting-and if you’re coasting then you’re not growing, and that growth is a step towards improving your self-perception.

Change Your Inner Voice.

Think about the ways you talk to yourself. In the morning when you’re getting ready, or when you’re cooking dinner in the evening. How about after your boss comes after you with a minor screw up that was made? Or when your partner is upset about something that isn’t being done at home? Think about the kind of language you use when you talk to yourself after these experiences. Do you use negative words and chastise yourself? Or do you say you’ll try again harder, and that it’s no big deal?

Step outside your own head for a moment and think about how you would react if these same experiences were happening to a loved one. Imagine that this loved one came to you with a story from work today-their boss got mad about a PowerPoint slide that had a typo, and they felt awful about themselves. They put themselves down and called themselves horrible names. Is that something you’d allow your loved one to do, or would you step in and tell them that it’s no big deal, people make mistakes, their boss was a jerk to overreact?

Now-why not do the same for yourself?

The next time you catch yourself using negative self-talk, try and take a step back. Breathe deeply. Relax. Remember to be kind to yourself, even if it is “just in your head.” Remind yourself that you’ll try harder next time, or that whatever mess up you’ve experienced isn’t that big of a deal in the long run. Practice self-forgiveness, and you’ll find that your self-image starts to improve vastly.

This year in my blogs I am going to help you feel better about yourselves and supply you with the tools that you need to send that negativity on its way.

Remember you are always in control of your thoughts. Just make those thoughts positve. and get into the habit of re framing your thoughts. stay positive.

Until next week

Have a good one

Jon X

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