3 Tips for Breaking a Habit (how to stay flexible day-to-day)

Aloha and welcome to my channel guys
and if you’re new here welcome my name is Ella and I help you retrain your
brain. I post videos every Sunday about how you can turn your rock bottom moment
into your breakthrough so if you don’t want to miss any upcoming content make
sure you subscribe and hit the notification bell below. So in today’s
video I’m going to be answering a question that came up in last week’s
video and that is “but Ella what if something comes up in my life and I need
to break a habit won’t that be difficult for me?| Well don’t worry it is completely
possible to be flexible with your habits and that’s why in today’s video I’m
going to be teaching you three different ways you can do just that. So the first
way you can be flexible with your habits is by being conscious of when you create
them and I know you’re probably thinking “but Ella you said habits were
subconscious activities.” Well they are and that’s why I want you to get into
the routine of checking in with your habits every so often and creating good
ones intentionally. And to do that you need to understand the formula for habit
and as you can see on the screen here a habit is a function of a cue (so that’s
a signal, something that reminds you to engage in…) number two, a routine (so that’s
a standard set of actions that you take). And number three a reward (that’s
something that motivates you to keep you going) and that’s all multiplied by repetition
because remember that habits are consistent and constant. So if you’re
trying to create a good habit for yourself or you have a good habit for
yourself already I need you to work on recognizing every single component of
the habit formula that creates or makes up that habit. The idea here is that you
want to be conscious of a subconscious activity so that you can remain in
control of it at some level. This way if something does come up in your life that
calls you to break a good habit, you’re going to 1)be actually more at ease
and comfortable with the fact that you have to break your habit and 2) you’re
going to be able to replace the elements of your habit formula if necessary
so that you can have a reward or still some sort of satisfaction that comes out
of the habitual routine. So for example I am currently running a challenge on my
Instagram page called the six-month ab challenge where everybody who’s involved
is going to create a habit or work to create a habit out of daily ab exercises.
Before the challenge started I asked everybody to create a habit formula
that’s personal to them with their ab workouts as the routine in that formula.
So let’s say person A did that and their cue was to do the routine right when
they woke up in the morning they had a separate alarm that went off say 5
minutes after they woke up and that cued them into the routine. And then and then
the routine of course was their ab exercise and the reward was let’s say
breakfast. Now let’s say something comes up in that person’s life say they have
an appointment one morning and because they just don’t really want to sacrifice
their sleep they’re not gonna have as much time or they don’t really want to
make the time to do their ab workout and make their usual breakfast. So let’s
look at their options: because they know their habit formula, they can (1) change
the routine so they could do a standing ab workout while they’re brushing your
teeth or doing something else this way you’re kind of killing two birds with
one stone essentially. Now option (2) they can change their cue so maybe that
usual alarm that they set in the morning to cue themselves to work out they
actually set it for later in the day knowing that that’s when they’ll have
time instead, and then option (3) they can slightly modify the reward so
instead of their usual breakfast they make a smoothie or something the day
before this way they can still have time to do their workout in the morning and
they can grab their breakfast and eat it on the commute to work.
So it’s really about being able to break down all the elements of that
formula and being conscious of when you’re creating a new good habit. So the
second way you can be flexible with your habits is through visualization,
repetition and lists. Often when we go about our days we create small habits to
be more efficient and productive. This can happen in
the workplace, this can be happening at school or this can even just be
happening when we run and do our daily errands and I definitely know from
experience that life, work, and school can throw curve balls at our good habits
when they call for something else to be done right in that moment. So then how do we continue to be productive but also flexible with our habits? So firstly you
can utilize lists, so what I want you to do is schedule yourself using some sort
of calendar (so that’s the first thing that you have to do). And then what I want
you to do now each evening before your next day starts is take a look at your
calendar for the following day and if you see oh my gosh I have eight meetings
to go to or I have to go for lunch with this person or I have to get this
project done for school then you know in advance that you’re gonna have a pretty
busy day. So then the second thing I want you to do is grab a pen and paper or
your phone notes or something that you can use to write a list and create a
list of everything you are going to do in that day (and when I say everything I
literally mean everything). So this way when the following day comes along you
can operate simply based on everything that you wrote on that list, knowing that
your original habits are probably not gonna make it onto that list. For me
personally when I went through university and when I was working an
office job this tip really really helped me remain productive when school or work
would throw those curveballs at my good habits. And hey if you guys are finding
this video helpful so far make sure you take a screenshot, post it to your
Instagram story and don’t forget to tag me so I can share your posts and don’t
forget to hashtag retrain your brain. And the next thing that I mentioned you can
do is create visuals. Now this doesn’t mean writing on a piece of paper or
drawing pictures this means creating visuals in your mind. How many times have
you been going about your day and then you get an email, a phone call, or you
just see somebody and they’re like “oh my gosh hey I need you to get this done for
me by the end of the day” or “hey can you please remember to do this for me in the
next hour” and since you don’t have a pen and paper to write that thing down what
usually ends up happening is that you fall back into your
regular habit and oh you end up forgetting to do that thing for that
person. Well this happens because the power of your habits are stronger than
the power of your memory. So how do we go about fixing this? What I want you to do
is create a visual in your mind as soon as you are requested to do a task so
here’s the first example that comes to my mind let’s say you are running
errands on a Saturday and you need to go grocery shopping you made it your usual
list of broccoli cheese milk eggs bread whatever. And you get in the car and
you’re driving and then an ad comes on the radio and you remember oh my gosh I
forgot to write Turkey on my grocery list! So now you need to remember to buy
a turkey what do you do well immediately you create a visual in your mind and
something that comes to my mind is you visualize you’re standing at the door of
the grocery store and you’re looking out and you see a turkey walking away and
you’re saying “bye Turkey” …do you get it? buy turkey because you have to buy a
turkey, right? Now you might be thinking “oh my gosh, Ella
that’s so stupid. Why wouldn’t I just repeat in my head “buy turkey buy turkey buy turkey:” until I get to the grocery store, and then when I get there I immediately
run to the turkeys and I a grab one. Sure you could do that but I’m telling you it
is a lot easier for us to remember visuals than words or sounds, so when you
do use this method as soon as you get to that grocery store you’re gonna walk to
the front doors of the grocery store and just seeing those doors is gonna
spark your memory to that visual that you created and then you’re going to
remember “buy turkey”. The more often you start creating these visuals the quicker
and more creative you’re going to become with them. And then I also mentioned
repetition that’s because I don’t want to tell you that you should only be
using visuals for those of you who are more auditory learners maybe repetition
is easier for you. So if you’re the type of person that needs to repeat “buy turkey
by turkey buy turkey” and then immediately get to that store and go put that turkey
into your grocery cart, maybe that’s gonna work for you. I can tell you I
actually work retail and a lot of times costumers
nowadays will tell me “oh I don’t need a bag” and out of habit I usually will go
and grab a bag to put their clothes inside of, but right away I started
getting into the new habit of repetition and I say no bag no bag no bag and I
find that helps a lot and now the third way you can be flexible with your habits
is by being specific with your habits so because I do want you to become
conscious of subconscious activities it’s beneficial for you to create habit
in areas that will call for say less flexibility on a day-to-day basis so
there are five different areas in your life that I want you to create good
habits within knowing in advance that yes these areas are usually standard day
to day or at least week end week end week day to week day. One of these areas
is sleeping and waking and my guess is that you sleep and wake sleep and wake
probably every day so creating one or more habits within that sleep and wake
area of your life well if not remain standard every day, but at least every
weekend or every weekday. The way you want to create those habits is
completely up to you, and your personal schedule and if you want to know the
four other areas that you can be creating good habits within then make
sure you watch this video right here. Now if you’re unsure about how to actually
identify current good habits within those areas and what specific habits you
should be creating within those areas then I actually want you to do a habit
audit and if you want to know how to do that then make sure you go down to the
description and subscribe to my blog because that’s exactly what I’m going to
be posting about tomorrow. Remember that ultimately I want you guys to work to
remain in some sort of control of your habits on some sort of level and
prioritize flexibility in your life if you do find this video helpful make sure
you hit that like button and don’t forget to leave a comment below and as
always I hope you guys have a great day and don’t forget to make this the year of you! Bye!