Take a look around: what is really easy to do in your home?
Maybe it is really easy to entertain friends? To sit and read? To practise yoga? Maybe it’s really easy to collapse on the sofa in front of the TV? Or to spend 2 hours in the closet searching what to wear? Maybe your home makes it easy for you to scatter around your clothes, towels, books and the content of your purse?
Is it easy in your home to feel proud or relaxed or embarrassed or stressed or efficient or serene or lonely?
Your home is everything when it comes to creating or eliminating habits. That is an understatement.
You are what you repeatedly do. (Aristotle)
What we repeatedly do is
often always triggered by the most obvious=easy option that is presented to us (as we all have experienced when we went shopping, planning to buy just some bread and fruit and came home with a bottle of overpriced shampoo, chocolate, yoghurt with the ‘newest’ flavour, a magazine, three apples and sans le bread.)
Motivation is overrated, environment often matters more (James Clear)
Imagine that you are connected by everything (and everyone, but that is a different conversation) around you by a strand each that is pulling your attention into a certain direction (which is exactly what is happening). Since we are constantly bombarded with all kinds of triggers – usually to make us buy something – no wonder we often feel pulled in all directions at one!
An incredibly elegant way to steer in which direction you are being pulled is to redesign your environment and create obvious visual clues for whatever you desire.
Put simply: where do you want to get better at? And how is your environment making that easy for you? Because changing your behaviour (‘what you repeatedly do’) is an uphill battle if your home doesn’t make it easy for you, as I recently experienced (yet again):
Every morning you can find me doing my rounds in the nearby woods and meadows. For me, that is nothing short of a revolution.
Until recently, moving consistently has never been high on my list of achievements, with the added acidity that it has always been very high on my list of things really I wanted to succeed. “Why can’t I… after all I’m a coach, I should know how…” (yes, I too have a voice in my head :).
So there was quite a complicated relationship to begin with.
Until that day when I started getting out of the door first thing in the morning. I haven’t stopped since.
Motivation? Discipline? Willpower? Deep insights into the incredible health benefits?
Well, all these things happened and are still happening since I managed to change my habit. But none of those did help me to get out of the door in the first place, and what is more, to do so consistently.
So what did?
The only thing that changed from countless attempts in the past is the place where I put my clothes. Now my walking gear is placed each night in such an obvious place that it is the first thing I stumble upon next morning. Before I’m even fully functional, I’ve already put it on. And once I put it on, there is nothing to do but to head out of the door. And once out of the door, I really enjoy being outside, all is quiet but the birds. The day and my body wake up together…
What had been impossible before is now becoming a habit.
By a simple change in my home.
Have you had similar experiences? Please share in the comments! Which habit did you get in or get out of your life? And how did your home contribute?