What is more important than goals? Systems. Systems are more important than goals. A goal is key to know where you want to go. But it’s your systems, your habits, that get you there.
If you want to build a new habit, you need to observe the 4 Laws of Behaviour Change: Make it obvious; Make it attractive; Make it easy; and finally Make it satisfying. Conversely, breaking any bad habit requires inverting these levers.
Let’s say you have a goal of getting into shape. If you don’t have a system in place, you may start strong, but eventually fall into old habits. If instead, you started Karate classes, then, attending classes is your routine. You will have started a habit that’s hard to break. Karate classes are the system that would pave the way to better health.
This principle is one of many from the book: Atomic Habits by James Clear. Over the years, I have read several self-help, personal mastery, mind, body and spirit books. Clear’s book is one of the best I’ve ever read. Implementing strategies from this book has immediately reaped dividends. Simply focusing on the Laws of Behaviour Change, has made creating & sticking to good habits and similarly breaking bad habits, all easier.
A few of my favourite concepts:
Utilizing a specific environment for a task
Applying the 2-Minute Rule to start a new habit
The quality of the workout matters less than showing up. Simply showing up reaffirms your identity.
Making a bad habit more difficult. (Sadly those convenient coffee pods had to go. :)