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October 7, 2013 / Dale Melchin

The Omnipotence of Persistence (good side, resilience good habits) Part Two

The last time we talked about the Dark Side of Habit.  Which entails three things.  Getting hung up by our conditioning and negativity.  Getting hung up by circumstances.  The thing we need to remember is just as our conditioning will hang us up because they are so ingrained into us, we can actually ingrain success into our way of being.
Now we are going to talk about the Light Side of Habit The key is getting success programmed into us and it is possible to do, it doesn’t happen overnight, but if you adhere to the following principles, you can get to where you want to go in life using the light side of habit.

The first is to focus on one area that affects several others these are called keystone habits. Charles Duhigg in his book the power of habit says “Keystone habits rely on identifying a few key priorities and fashioning them into powerful levers.”  And again, “The habits that matter most are the ones that, when they start shift, dislodge and remake other patterns.”

How is this applied?  Let me use an overused example, physical fitness.  If you are a guy and you want to lose the beer belly, you have to cut bad (white) carbs, eat vegetable, lean meats, and drink plenty of water.  You also need to engage in plenty of physical activity that you enjoy to make sure you are burning up the excess fat on your body.  You also need to avoid refined sugars and the other junk that got you to where you are.  There may also be value in going on a cleanse, but don’t do it without weighing all the options.
You can also apply this to financial discipline.  Work your full schedule, control your variable expenses, and make sure you invest into areas that need maintenance such as vehicle or home, and health, so that way they won’t sneak up on you later.
The formula of keystone habits can be applied to anything.  You know yourself best so you figure out what you need to do.

The next is to focus on incremental change over time. In the fitness example some people go completely berserk when it comes to exercise and fitness and as a result they wear themselves out and it creates an aversion to fitness which is a mental habit that you don’t want.

Depending on your existing physical condition it is best to start small. Go for walks everyday.  Most people can manage a 30 minute walk, sometimes, not but start by doing what you can and do it consistently.  After you’ve gone for a walk with out ending it breathing for your life, start going for longer walks.  Add more time and distance on to it.  Then start walking for a two minutes and running for one minute until you complete your time.  Then start increasing the run time as you are able.  Provided you are also still eating correctly you’ll start to see results in 30 days or so.

The next is to take stock of failure paths and counter act them. What stimulus causes you to skip your walk?  Counteract that stimulus by reminding yourself of the reason why you want to get fit.
The final step is to recommit. Re-commitment is vital to success, we are human and we are going to drop the ball.  The key is to meet the commitment more times than we fail.

The 80% rule is a great rule to live by.  If you are engaging in the activities that you need to engage in to achieve your goal, then you are going to succeed.  Eighty Percent of success is just showing up as Woody Allen said.  Michael Hyatt even admits to having to restart again.  So those of us who are striving to get where he is in our respective fields need to account for failure by recommitting.
Finally, don’t be hard on yourself. This is tough for me.  Its probably tough for you as well.  But we need to extend the same mercy to ourselves that we would extend to others.  Just get up and get going again.
Building successful habits is truly, very simple the key is to keep persisting, which is a choice we can all make.

Question:  What would following this system make possible for you?  Please share below.

 

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