Struggling with self-discipline doesn’t mean you have to raise the white flag and declare your efforts to improve your habits a complete failure. Instead, work to increase the chances that you’ll stick to your healthier habits – even when you don’t feel like it. These tricks can help you stick to your good habits over the long haul:
1. Plan ahead to reduce the excuses. When it comes to bad habits, we often look for excuses to give ourselves. Proper planning, however, makes it less likely that you’ll be able to find excuses to give up. Put your gym shoes next to the bed at night so you’ll see them first thing in the morning. Pack your lunch the night before so you can’t convince yourself you don’t have time. Look for strategies that will decrease your ability to make excuses for ditching your good habits.
2. Make it harder to give into temptation during a moment of weakness. We all have vulnerabilities that can sidetrack us from reaching our goals. Recognize the times when you’re most likely to give into temptation and make it harder for a single moment of weakness to sabotage your best efforts.
3. Create a list of all the reasons you should keep going. Giving in and giving up are decisions often made based on emotion, rather than logic. Reading a list of the reasons why it’s important to reach your goals can increase the likelihood that you’ll stick to your good habits.