These Small Habits Changed My Life

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If you’re looking to make a big impact on your life, consider adding these habits to your routine

There is this misconception that we have to do all the things to live our best lives. 

A morning routine that has 7 parts to it.

A health journey where you take all these supplements, eat these weird foods and still find time to walk and exercise. 

A side hustle, a full-time job, a thriving relationship, time for self-care AND time to sleep.

No wonder everyone seems burnt out… we’re trying to cram a million different things into 24 hours.

But the ironic thing is that I started making progress when I started focusing on less. Instead of doing a million things in the morning, I focused on one thing and I felt way better.

I no longer had the feeling that I should be doing something else which led to a calmer mind so I could actually focus on what I was doing at that moment. 

It’s time to ditch hustle culture and bring back the idea of less is more. 

But what works for me may not work for you so while I included the habits that changed my life, I also included some other ideas at the bottom of this post to inspire you. 

The power of your routine

Your routine is going to be what dictates how you show up and how successful you are. We all have routines. Someone’s routine may include getting up at 5 am to workout and another person’s routine could be snoozing their alarm ten times and then scrolling on their phone.

Neither routine is inherently bad but it does shape you into who you are today. 

Routines are made up of habits. Habits are actions that we do on autopilot and take the least amount of energy. Your brain loves habits because it enable you to save energy for other things. 

The difference between a routine and a habit is that a routine is intentional.

For example, when you go on vacation, you may feel out of routine which is completely normal but you’re still going to brush your teeth before you go to bed. 

Because brushing your teeth is a habit. It’s something that you’re going to do no matter what. 

The power of small habits

Something like brushing your teeth doesn’t take long but it’s a small habit that leads to having healthy teeth and gums. After all, if you didn’t brush your teeth you may not have any at all. 

But that small, consistent action leads to a big result — having a healthy, beautiful smile!

While brushing your teeth is a simple example, other habits lead to your success. Instead of adding in these long drawn-out habits, what if you added in small habits instead?

Because those small habits are all you need to unlock the results that you desire. 

Even 10 minutes a day can lead to massive results if you do it consistently. That’s better than having an hour-long task that you try to squeeze in where you can (which will probably never truly become a habit). 

Tips when creating new habits

When adding new habits to your routine, there are a few things that you should consider. 

Quality over Quantity

Again, you don’t need a routine that has 20 steps to it. 

So instead of stressing over how you’re going to find time to meditate, stretch, read, workout, journal …. Why not pick one of these things and focus on that?

That is going to reduce the overwhelm and if you feel like you should be doing something else, either decide to shift to that thing or just stay focused on the path ahead. 

Once you find a routine that feels good and lights you up then it won’t matter if your routine doesn’t include the things the gurus tell you is essential. We’re all unique so what works for you may not work for me and that’s okay.

We need to normalize the fact that stillness and white space in our schedules are essential for our mental well-being. 

Self Awareness is Key

Before you start adding new habits to your routine, you should spend some time getting to know yourself. Ask yourself questions and figure out what you want. 

It’s crazy how many people truly don’t know what they want. If you don’t know what you want then your power to decide is gone. 

Think about it. If you don’t know what makes you tick then how are you going to be able to decide what you need to do to feel fulfilled? 

This may sound like a daunting task but when it comes down to it, you have to decide what you want. So take some time (not too much time, we aren’t trying to procrastinate here) and make a decision on what direction you want to head.

Once you know that, it’ll make it so much easier to pick new habits that support that higher version of yourself.

Focus on One Habit at a Time

I know it can be so easy to want to do all the things. Once you figure out that vision of your future self, you want it now. I get it. 

And that’s normal. After all, we live in a world where we can get most things delivered to our doorstep within two days. So of course, we want it now. Who wouldn’t?

But that’s not how our brain works. It takes time to build a new habit and a lot of energy so it’s too exhausting to try to add a bunch of new habits all at once. That’s why many people fall off track after a few weeks because it takes a ton of effort.

It’s much easier to focus on one habit, make that something that you do automatically and then move on to the next habit. 

1% better Mindset

Which leads to the idea of becoming 1% better every day. It’s all about those small, consistent actions that we do. You have to ditch that all-or-nothing mentality and instead decide that you are the greatest project you’ll ever work on.

You’re always going to be improving and evolving so you might as well embrace the journey. 

So focus on one thing at a time, focus on falling in love with yourself and the process of blooming into a new version of yourself.

Life gets way more enjoyable if you learn to love where you’re at now while being excited about where you’re going. 

5 Habits That Changed My Life

Once I incorporated these 5 habits into my routine, I started seeing major progress in my well-being. 

1. Walking more 

I aim for 7,000 steps a day but just from walking, I’ve felt more energized which has been a struggle of mine for quite some time. As humans, we aren’t meant to sit all day so taking breaks to get up and walk around reaps many benefits

It’s good to take breaks so I take a few quick walks throughout my work day. 

On top of that, it has become a time where my husband and I unplug and spend some time outside which is one of my favorite times of the day. 

If you’re currently spending a lot of time sitting, I suggest adding 1,000 steps to your average daily steps and increasing from there once you’re hitting the new goal consistently. 

2. Having a hobby

Finding activities outside my 9-5 other than watching TV has made all the difference in my outlook on life. 

Having a hobby offers numerous benefits, including reducing stress and improving mental well-being by providing a creative outlet and a break from daily routines. 

It can also be a way to make new friends through shared interests. Hobbies can boost your confidence because you develop new skills and achieve personal goals. 

You don’t necessarily have to be good at your hobby so try activities that interest you. You never know what hobby you’ll fall in love with. 

3. Limit my time on social media

I have a bad tendency to compare myself to others. I know this is normal but I realized that I would compare my chapter 1 to someone else chapter 22 and feel inadequate.

Even people who are at the same level as me I’d compare and feel inferior if they were doing better than me so I realized I needed to spend less time scrolling on social media. We’re all on our own unique paths after all. 

Even people who seem to be at the same level as me may have more experience or are putting in more work than me that I don’t see … especially on social media. 

So I’ve gotten rid of the habit of scrolling to find inspiration and instead just create posts and reels that I enjoy creating. 

4. Creating Boundaries around my routine

I think boundaries have gotten a bad reputation for so long because people think of it the wrong way. I did too until I reframed the idea of boundaries to be about me. 

Boundaries tell people how to treat you. You aren’t telling people what to do; you’re telling them how you would like to be treated. 

Once I made boundaries more about me, it became easier to stick to them. People are going to do whatever they want but that doesn’t mean you have to stand there and tolerate it. You can politely excuse yourself from the situation. 

Having boundaries creates healthier relationships and more time in your routine to get things done. 

5. Enjoy the present moment

I used to spend all my time wishing for the weekend or my next summer vacay until I realized that needed to change. The majority of my life is going to be that ‘boring’ day-to-day so I made the decision to fall in life with my daily routine. 

Look at your current routine and ask yourself what you could add that would bring you a little more joy. Then try adding in some rituals that will romanticize your life so you fall in love with your day-to-day.

These are the 5 habits that have changed my life over the past few years. I think anyone could benefit from these habits because they are going to have a huge impact on your mental well-being and most of them don’t take much time at all. 

Just because someone on social media is doing a million things and acting like they’re thriving doesn’t mean that’s the secret ingredient that you’re missing. I think it’s better to focus on a few things that bring you the most benefits and have time left over to do whatever you want to do in the moment. 

38 Additional Small Habits Ideas that will change your life

However, if you aren’t interested in those 5 habits, I’ve listed some more below. 

Because I know when you’re on a personal growth journey, sometimes it can be confusing where to start. The habits on this list can completely change your life but remember, the goal isn’t to add all of these habits into your routine.

Pick the ones that’ll be the most beneficial to you and leave the rest here.

Habits to help you feel your best physically

  1. Drink more water: There is no doubt that water is important (we need it to survive after all). The experts say to drink half your body weight in ounces so give it a try and see how you feel.
  2. Preventative care: Go get a physical, a skin check, and a cleaning at the dentist to name a few. It could save you a lot of money in the long run and at the very least help you feel your best. 
  3. Have a Colorful Plate: Eat your fruits and veggies. It’ll make you feel better so you can show up more fully to become the best version of yourself.
  4. Move your body: I like lifting weights but if yoga is your jam then do that. Just make sure you’re moving your body on a consistent basis. 
  5. Stretch: You aren’t getting old, you just need to stretch. 
  6. Rest: We can’t be on the go all the time. It’s important to let the body and mind relax from time to time. It’s not unproductive, it’s actually going to help you stay consistent in the long run.
  7. Prioritize sleep: Aim for 7-9 hours and you’ll feel like a new woman. 

Habits to help you feel your best mentally

  1. Limit screen time: the average screen time is crazy. I get that some of it you can’t avoid (like most of us work in front of a computer) but try to limit the amount of time that you’re scrolling or watching TV.
  2. Consistent bedtime: Our brains like routine so going to bed and getting up around the same time is going to help you get better sleep and feel more alert throughout the day. 
  3. Practice Self-care: if you’re new to the self-care game, check out this post on some free self-care ideas you can do at home. 
  4. Read: whether it’s fiction or nonfiction, reading is good for the brain. 
  5. Breathe: Take a moment to slow down and just breathe. 
  6. Meditate: it may sound woo woo but meditating is a great way to slow down those racing thoughts and just be. 
  7. Go outside: There are many benefits to being out in nature so take a break from working and step outside. 
  8. Spend some time alone: Especially if you’re introverted, alone time is essential to recharge your batteries. By spending time alone, you can hear yourself think and learn more about yourself. 
  9. Focus on self-love: This may be the most important habit to adopt. You have to learn how to love yourself. Whether that is doing power poses in the mirror or working on reframing that inner critic, find time to fall in love with yourself.
  10. Affirmations: Reading affirmations is a quick and easy way to program some positivity into your brain.
  11. Music: turning on your favorite song and dancing can be a great way to reduce stress after a long day.
  12. Spend time with loved ones: as humans, we crave connection so spend time with those you love. Even introverts need people.
  13. Limit time with people who drain you: On the flip side, you don’t have to hang out with everyone. Our social batteries are limited so don’t waste it on people who don’t make you feel good.
  14. Spread Kindness: a smile can truly be contagious. It doesn’t cost you anything to show others compassion and kindness. 

Habits to help you be more productive

  1. Set Goals: it’s hard to be productive if you don’t know what you’re working towards. Set specific goals so you can be super clear on what you need to do.
  2. Ditch the snooze button: those extra 5 minutes aren’t doing anything for you. If anything, when I hit the snooze button, I just wake up more tired. Instead of snoozing for a few minutes, try to incorporate one of these habits! 
  3. Audit what you’re consuming: what we consume on a daily basis can make a huge impact on our mental well-being but also on how we show up. So look at who you follow on social media and what news you’re consuming and ask yourself how it is making you feel. If it isn’t good, you may want to limit it or completely unfollow it altogether. 
  4. Use a daily planner: It’s easy to feel overwhelmed if you’re trying to keep that never-ending to-do list just in your head. A daily planner can help you reach your goals.
  5. Don’t have a million things on your to-do list each day: It’s important to prioritize your to-do list. I suggest picking three things to focus on every day that will move you closer toward your goals. 
  6. Organize: Did you know if your physical space is cluttered it can cause your mind to feel cluttered as well? So organize your physical space but also use tools like a planner or journaling to organize your mind. 
  7. Declutter where you can: It’s not just about organizing, you’re going to have to get rid of some things too. Somewhere that you could start is your email list, I’m sure there are things you need to unsubscribe from that are no longer relevant. (hopefully not my newsletter 😉). Next, look at the notifications on your phone, what can you silence?
  8. Choose a Productivity technique: I personally like the Pomodoro technique but there are several different ways to focus in on a task so you can get things done more effectively. 
  9. Stop multitasking: This is a myth! Your mind can’t focus on more than one thing at a time, it’s just constantly switching from one task to another which is actually going to lead to lower productivity and lower quality of work so do yourself a favor and stop multitasking.  
  10. Be intentional about building a life you love: It’s so much easier to be productive if you know what you want and what you’re working towards. So take the time to build a strong why and get clear on what steps you need to take to get to where you want to go. 

Habits to help you grow

  1. Read Blogs (or listen to podcasts): Check out your favorite blog or podcast and spend some time learning about a topic that interests you. 
  2. Practice gratitude: This can literally take 5 minutes (check out these gratitude affirmations) but can completely change your outlook on life. Spend some time thinking of the people and things you’re thankful for.
  3. Journal: Sometimes getting those thoughts out of your head and onto paper is all you need to make sense of them. Journaling can be a great tool to get to know yourself better and work through things that are keeping you up at night.
  4. Adopt a mindful practice to help you with overthinking, negative self-talk, procrastination, etc.: If journaling is not for you, there are a variety of different techniques that can help you calm that mind of yours. We’re all unique so you just need to try different ones out to figure out what works for you.
  5. Just do it: You’re never going to feel completely ready so you have to get out there and just do it. So try implementing the new habit, try that new hobby, post on social media, and do the things that scare you. Sometimes the hardest part is just starting. 
  6. Create a Budget: This isn’t a finance blog so I don’t typically talk about money but it’s important that you know where your money is going. It’s way less stressful if you take the time to create a budget so you aren’t in the red every month.
  7. Stay Curious: If something interests you, give it a shot. Nothing is permanent so you don’t have to keep doing it if you don’t like it. 

& there you have it. This isn’t an extensive list so you may find a habit that works great for you (and if you do lemme know so I can share it!) 

With anything in life, habits aren’t necessarily permanent. Sure, you’re probably always going to brush your teeth, but you may work out at 6 AM every morning right now but that may not be the case in a few years when your life circumstances may be different. 

How you choose to live your life is going to dictate the life that you have. Your habits are going to nurture this version of you so if you want to change your life, you’re going to need to create new habits. 

Your habits are the secret ingredient to reaching your goals. 

So think of who you want to be and what habits she would have. Then slowly start incorporating those habits and being 1% better every day and you’ll be amazed at where you are in a year from now. 

Until next time,

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