Woman holding sign saying healthy habits in coloured letters

How to create healthy habits you can stick to

How to create healthy habits you can stick to 1840 1272 candykingclinic

It’s no secret that we all struggle creating health habits – and sticking to them long term.

Why is this? Well, it’s because we rely on willpower to keep us on the straight and narrow – and this alone won’t work. Habits sit in the sub-conscious mind, and often we’re simply not aware of the factors that drive some of our behaviours.

For example, why we pick up that cigarette. How we can promise to have an alcohol-free day but then pour a glass (or three) of wine. The promises we make about exercising, only to ignore our trainers sitting at the front door.

There’s a lot more to changing habits and behaviour than just telling yourself you’ll start tomorrow.

What lies under your unhealthy habits?

Ultimately, you need to have a motivating reason for wanting to change a habit. A deep knowledge that making a change will be of benefit to you and your future self.

The difficulty lies in what comes next: addressing underlying issues that could be holding you back. For example, maybe you want to give up drinking, but you worry you’ll lose your friendships with some people, or that you’ll no longer have your crutch to help you during tough times.

How kinesiology can help with unhealthy habits

I’ve had many clients achieve success with changing their habits – including overeating, giving up booze and ending a bad nail-biting ritual. I’ve helped some clients with their financial goals, and others to establish an exercise program that suits their schedule and energy. I’ve even helped clients bid farewall to procrastination!

How did I do it? Great question. Remember at the start of the article we talked about how habits live in your subconscious? That’s where kinesiology can help – it assists you in discovering why you hold onto certain behaviours, negative patterns or particularly destructive habits.

If you want or need to go deeper and really smash those bad habits out of your life for good, the unique Delete/Reset sessions are ideal. These sessions are excellent for discovering what your passions and goals are, and the action steps you need to take to achieve desired outcomes. Each session takes a deep dive into the subconscious mind to give clarity and focus.

What is habit stacking?

If you’re a fan of James Clear, author of Atomic Habits, you may be familiar with the term ‘habit stacking’. This is a great strategy when it comes to using an existing habit to build a new one.

As Clear says, ‘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 behaviour on top’. It’s a form of what he calls ‘implementation intention’ and it works because your previous habits and behaviours are already programmed into your brain.

Some ideas for habit stacking might include:

  • ‘Every time I switch the kettle on to make a cup of tea, I will do 20 squats / lunges’
  • ‘As soon as my alarm goes off, I’ll put on my meditation app and do a 5 min morning meditation’
  • ‘As soon as I’ve done the Wordle, I’ll text or call my mum to see how she went with it’

These are just ideas, but you can see how easy it is to ‘habit-stack’ onto existing, ingrained habits.

For example, if you have 5 cups of tea a day, you’ll end up doing 100 squats or lunges a day, too. Linking your alarm to meditation time can only be a baeneficial addition to your morning routine (rather than scrolling through social media!) And although the Wordle can be a solitary activity, you can make it fun by comparing notes with a parent or friend – creating a social habit that keeps you connected.

Other tips for making your new habit stick

As I tell my clients, we’re no strangers to creating habits, but committing to them is much more difficult. Here are some tips for forging habits that will remain long after everyone else has forgotten their New Year’s resolutions!

  1. Understand why you have the old habit in the first place, and what you get out of it
  2. Be consistent and constantly take small steps towards change
  3. Break big goals or big habit changes into smaller, manageable chunks
  4. Revise your goals – you might want to set monthly challenges so they’re easier to achieve
  5. Don’t set yourself up to fail. Choose a time that works and leave your gym bag at the door
  6. Acknowledge your progress and congratulate and reward yourself at milestones along the way.

CTA: Want to create healthy habits for your life? Or change a bad habit you’re struggling with? Leave a comment on the competition post on either Facebook or Instagram, and I’ll enter you into the draw to win a Delete/Reset session with me, valued at $597! I’ll be drawing the winner on Monday, January 31 – stay tuned for the Facebook Live on my socials that day, or in the monthly newsletter!

Back to top