Our habits are mental short cuts learnt from experience. Habits either makes us or break us and we are all products of our habits. Through habit formation it is incredibly useful because the conscious mind is the bottleneck of the brain. It can only pay attention to one problem at a time. As a result, your brain is always working to preserve your conscious attention for whatever task is most essentials.
As habits are created, the level of activity in the brain decreases, you tend to lock yourself in the cue that predict success and tune out everything else. For example, if you are anxious or stressed out coping with emotional problems, your brain automates what has worked for you in the past either good or bad; your brain skips the process of trial and error and creates mental rules – if this, then that.
Despite their efficiency, many people think they don’t want to be slave to their habits – they still wonder about the benefits of habits – I hear something like, “Will habits make my life dull?” “Does so much routine take away the vibrancy and spontaneity of life?” Those are false and stupid questions because they make you think that you must choose between building habits and attaining freedom. In reality the two complement each other.
Personally, without habits I have no freedom, and improving good habits is always high on my list whilst I refrain from the ones that don’t serve me anymore. Habits do not restrict freedom; they create it and people who don’t have their habits handled are the ones with the least amount of freedom.
Without good health habits, you will always be short of energy. Without good financial habits you will always be struggling for money. Without good learning habits, you will always feel behind. When you have a good habit build it up – life is easy to handle and enjoy.
Building good habits in the present allows you to do more of what you want in the future. Personally, I started out in the commercial gym as a personal trainer 12 years ago. Since then I’ve been building, structuring my habits to give me the freedom I have today. Now I have my own business / studio and lots of freedom to grow.
Here are 3 recommended books that will help you develop good habits and get rid of the bad ones:
- The Law of Success in Sixteen Lessons – Napoleon Hill
- Atomic Habits: An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits and Break Bad Ones – James Clear
- Unstoppable: How to Get Through Hell, Overcome Anxiety, and Dominate in Business and Life – Craig Ballantyne (my good friend!)