It’s important as a homemaker to have good habits. Do you have a hard time sticking with habits at home? Do the dishes pile up in your sink, clothes go unwashed for days, and junk mail endures on your countertops? If this sounds like you, then 10 Easy Ways to Stick With Habits is for you. In this blog post, I’ll share some tips that have helped me stick to good habits.
It’s not always easy to stick with habits at home. Between managing kids, doing laundry and cooking dinner, it can be hard to find time for anything else! However, there are some simple ways that you can implement and stick with habits at home.
Whether you want to change old habits like going to bed too late or eating more vegetables or staying on top of the dishes, creating new habits is often easier said than done.
However, the good news is that even if you just make some simple changes to your routine those changes can have a huge impact on your life.
“The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5 ESV
I’m excited to share a few tips and tricks to help you create better habits and chuck the old ones so you can feel less stress at home.
A few tips for choosing new habits to work on:
- It’s important to choose habits that will actually improve your life so you feel motivation and momentum once you get started.
- Don’t try to change your whole life all at once. You’ll feel overwhelmed and give up. Choose one or two things to work on until you’ve mastered those before moving on to the next thing.
- Set small goals to work toward that are actionable and achievable.
related: The Disciplined Homemaker | Learn to Be Self Disciplined
Now let’s talk about how to turn your goals into new, habits:
Choose a habit to do daily.
If your goal is to go to bed with a clean kitchen every night or wake up each morning and make your bed so it’s neat the rest of the day, it will be easier to create that new habit because you are doing it every day around the same time each day.
If you need to, you can set your alarm for a specific time of the day to remind you to go work on your new habit. I love setting alarms on my phone so I don’t get sidetracked!
Your new habit should be easy to implement.
If you have a bad habit you are trying to replace with a new, better habit, if it’s too hard to implement, you’ll likely struggle. New habits are had to form even when they are fairly easy, so start with smaller habit goals.
It only takes a few minutes to make your bed. If you wash the dishes as soon as your family is done eating, they are easier and quicker to clean up. Setting a goal to read one chapter of the Bible or read two pages in a book you want to read are all examples of habits that are achievable and easy to implement on a daily basis.
Your new habits should be built into your current routine. So, for instance, making your bed each day should be done at the same time each day – after you get up or perhaps after breakfast.
Waking up would already be part of your routine. Eating breakfast would also be part of your current routine. Incorporate your new habit into your existing routine.
For each new habit, you decide to work on, you can create reminders around your house. For instance:
- put a chart or tracker you can check off boxes on the refrigerator
- place sticky notes around the house
- set alarms on your phone for specific habits
- write a note on the bathroom mirror with dry-erase markers
Having visible reminders can help you stay on track for creating your new habits and you’re less likely to get distracted or side-tracked. I’m so easily distracted! Reminders help me tremendously.
Keep track of your progress.
Habit trackers or journal logs can help you stay on track and are a great visual reminder and motivator. Especially if you love seeing your progress on paper!
If you decide to keep a journal while tracking your habits, you can write down things like how you felt today, what you’re struggling with, and why the habit feels hard. You might find a pattern and think of a way to avoid feeling those feelings.
You can also journal about your reasons for creating new habits and what is motivating you to keep progressing toward your goal.
Make your new habits convenient.
Whether you think you have a routine or not, you do. It may be a loose routine. But you likely have patterns in your days or weeks that when you give it some thought you can see how you usually do things.
It’s easy to be stuck in bad habits because you’re stuck in a routine and pattern that makes it difficult to change.
However, you have the power to change your life with every little decision you make. Making your bed may not seem like that big of a deal, but it matters more than you think.
In fact, every small change you make can lead to a happier, more peaceful life starting today.
It’s important to remember how much of your life depends on routines and how much easier your life can be if you include good habits in your daily routine.
John C. Maxwell said, “You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.”
As homemakers, those daily habits, however seemingly insignificant each one is on its own when strung together are what make up your daily routine.
Making your new habits easy to implement and convenient to do means that you are on your way to creating the life you truly want to live.
String your new habits together.
It’s easier to create new habits when you tie them to things you already do during the day. For instance, I do squats every time I brush my teeth. Or you might add unloading the dishwasher first thing in the morning while you prepare breakfast.
Listening to a podcast or foreign language lessons while you wash the dishes is another way to tie one habit to an already established habit.
James Clear says, “When it comes to building new habits, you can use the connectedness of behavior to your advantage. One of the best ways to build a new habit is to identify a current habit you already do each day and then stack your new behavior on top. This is called habit stacking.”
related: Read the book Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg
If you can stack one habit that you have already established in your life with a new habit you’re trying to create, you’re more likely to have success and stick with the new habit.
Find accountability partners.
Having people in your life to help you stay accountable to your desired goals is a great way to ensure you stick to those new habits. Ask a trusted friend – one who will tell you the truth and hold you to your goals – to help you stay accountable.
Set weekly or monthly goals or milestones and report back to your friend each week. Make sure your accountability partner knows what your goals are and ask them to check in with you on a regular basis.
Avoid long breaks when building a new habit.
It’s inevitable that you’ll have days that don’t go as planned. Maybe you get sick and don’t do your usual routine. Or you’re rushed and don’t have time. Or maybe something unexpected happens which disrupts your day.
Maybe you just didn’t feel like doing your new habit.
It’s important to try hard to get back on track the following day. Don’t let too much time pass before you do your habit again or you’ll basically be starting over with your habit building.
Completing your new habit every day will make it easier to achieve success and harder to make excuses for not doing it.
Build habits that can last.
You know what they say, it takes 28 days to build a new habit.
This is important! You will need to complete your new habit every day for at least a month before it truly becomes a habit. And often, if it’s something that requires a lot of willpower or energy, it may take even longer.
It’s so much easier to be lazy!
But the good news is, as you work on your habit every single day, it will get easier and easier. You’ll get used to the changes and even look forward to them.
You’ll know it’s a true “habit” when you do it without really even thinking about it – like brushing your teeth or taking a shower.
Every small success you have will lay the foundation for positive personal growth and development over time giving you the momentum you need to add even more positive changes to your life.
Be compassionate with yourself.
It’s also important not to beat yourself up if you have a bad day if you forget to exercise one day or get lazy about sticking to your habit. Learn to be gentle with yourself, forgive yourself, and move forward so you can continue creating new better habits.
Negative thinking or negative self-talk will only lead to frustration and a poor self-image. When you find yourself getting into a pattern of negative self-talk and beating yourself up for not living up to your own expectations, it’s important to be self-aware
When you get in the negative cycle of beating yourself up over making mistakes, or forgetting to do something or missing a day on your habit-forming journey, it does more harm than good. It’s tough to break out of negativity so the sooner you do it, the better.
Rewarding yourself as you hit milestones will help you enjoy the process.
Some good ways to reward yourself as you build habits are to:
- have a friend or partner come with you and do the new habit with you.
- plan ahead and make time for yourself.
- eat something healthy and delicious.
- buy yourself a fun, useful item.
Just make sure you are doing things that feel good or are productive for your life in some way. This is an important step because it makes forming new habits much more enjoyable which lead to better results over time.
Forming new habits
The good news is you don’t have to make huge changes to improve your life. Small habits, small changes can (and will) change your life. It’s those tiny habits, those little changes you make in your daily routine – the things you do day in and day out (like filling a jar with your spare change) that make the biggest difference over time.
And it’s those small habits and little changes that will be the easiest for you to implement.
There are so many ways you can change your life with new little habits that will improve your life in big ways. Just remember what I said earlier: don’t try to do too many at once. Master one or two new habits and move on to the next.
Studies on habit formation have shown that the best way to create habits that last is to make them easy to establish and maintain.
You should also tie these habits into other tasks so they become convenient, building habits like working out or spending time with friends during lunch breaks rather than after work hours as an example.
Reward yourself when you complete one of these tasks. These tactics have been shown to help us build strong productivity-enhancing routines which can last all year long.
Implementing and sticking with your new habits
Implementing and sticking with new habits is so much easier when you have the right mindset. And setting smaller goals (tiny habits) with a determined reward at the end helps motivate you to make it to the end of your goal.
- set small goals
- reward yourself
- focus on staying on track every day
- positive thoughts only
- get an accountability partner
- pick up where you left off on days when you skipped your new habit
What new habits are you working on? Do you have a plan of action yet? Let me know in the comments below!
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