12 Scientifically Proven Habits That Will Change Your Life
There's a science to building new habits. Read on to get yourself unstuck and get the change you want kick-started.
Research says the best way to bring change into your life is by creating new routines and sticking to them until they become habits.
The way to make sure we cultivate the new behavior is to reward ourselves. With motivation, we repeat the action again and again until it becomes ingrained.
How you go about it is entirely up to you. But here are some helpful steps you can take along the way:
1. Seek the purpose in everything you do.
Purpose drives meaning. When you have a purpose and you believe it can make a beneficial change in the world, you're motivated to make things happen.
2. Stop listening to your amygdala.
The amygdala, an almond-shaped piece in the middle of your brain, is in charge of keeping you safe. But sometimes it gets in the way of you taking bold steps and moving with confidence. The next time you feel afraid to do something, do it anyway--it's just your amygdala doing its job.
3. Cultivate great relationships.
Relationships are often portrayed as sustaining themselves by magic, but in truth they require time and effort. Think of them as an investment that grows with constant deposits of patience, care, and respect.
4. Build your mental toughness.
How? Stop yourself any time you catch yourself blaming others, taking everything so seriously, or giving in to distraction. Stop blaming the past or external factors for the choices you make.
5. Make yourself a good listener.
Effective communication is one of the keys to building resilience and maintaining balance in your life. It's the foundation upon which we build our lives, the way we understand others and allow them to know and understand us. And listening is central to communication--arguably the most important skill we possess.
6. Help others.
One of the best antidotes to stress is to get out of your own thinking, and the best way to distract yourself is by helping someone else. You can't worry about yourself when you're busy caring for others.
7. Ask questions.
Curiosity is among the best skills you can build. Curiosity about people, in particular, enriches your business networking. Interact with others and draw them out. You'll learn amazing things and gain a reputation as a great conversationalist.
8. Carve out some time alone.
It's easier for some of us to achieve than others, but a certain amount of alone time makes for a happy and productive life. A major cause of unhappiness is a lack of private time. Seek out ways to give yourself a few moments of solitude.
9. Keep a gratitude journal.
Grateful thoughts help to keep pessimism and worry at bay. Numerous studies have linked gratitude to greater happiness, satisfaction with life, and optimism. It may even help you sleep better.
10. Take a chance.
Risk can be scary, but we're more likely to regret the things we did not take a chance on than the things we did. Practice taking smart risks--that is, risks related to something that's meaningful to you.
11. Learn something new.
It doesn't matter what field or how simple or difficult. New learning recharges your mind and makes you feel more competent.
12. Perfect your workspace.
Your environment can have a big impact on your effectiveness and productivity. Experiment with making your workspace one that's suited to the tasks you do and a place where you enjoy spending time.