Tip of the Week: Building Better Habits through Habit Stacking

What is Habit Stacking, Anyways?

Think about the little things that you do while at work, each and every day, all the parts of your routine that have become automatic. You don?t really have to think about them, do you? At this point, it?s just what you do. You probably have a few things like this in your personal life, too? things and processes that feel so natural at this point that not doing them feels wrong.

Habit stacking is simply the conscious act of purposefully adding a new habit into your existing pattern of behavior. Let?s go through how you can do so for yourself:

Step 1: Identify What You Want to Do

There are plenty of tasks that are well-suited for habit stacking. Generally speaking, these tasks are ones that take relatively little effort to do, but are usually put off in favor of your other responsibilities. Alternatively, these could be new activities that you want to incorporate into your daily process and you just want to be intentional about it. Whatever the case may be, select one and proceed.

Step 2: Figure Out What You Already Do

With your intended habit in mind, review your current habits and routines to identify any opportunities you have to organically introduce your new behavior. It?s important that they match up somewhat well, as a mismatched set of habits won?t be effective. For instance, if you want to start catching up on industry news, it makes sense to start a habit of reading a newsletter over breakfast? not so much to start reading the newsletter during your morning internal huddle. Do your best to pair up cohesive sets of habits whenever you try adding a new one. 

Step 3: Actively Work to Assimilate the Two

When all is said and done, the only way to really create a habit is to do the same thing over and over again until it becomes natural. While the existing habit will help, it?s important that you keep yourself accountable to your endeavor. Write your intentions down?I will read the blog White Mountain IT Services puts out at breakfast?and do whatever it takes to make sure you do it, setting a reminder, checking back on your written intention, and repeating until the habit is formed.

Wash, rinse, and repeat, and you should have a new habit before very long.

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