They say it takes 21 days to create a new habit. That’s kind of a weird idea though, isn’t it? It doesn’t take that long to form a bad habit. And sometimes no matter how hard we try it takes us a lot longer to form a new habit.
So how long does it really take to create a new habit? The answer is that it depends. It depends on your mindset and it depends on how big of a change it is from what you are doing now. If it is your habit to eat a bowl of ice cream at night and you switch from regular ice cream to a low sugar frozen yogurt version, it’s probably not going to take you very long to make that new habit. Giving up ice cream altogether though or cutting out all sugar on the other hand might take a lot longer.
When we ask that question, what we really want to know is how long do we have to tough it out before it gets easier. Is there a light at the end of the tunnel where we don’t have to try so hard anymore? In other words, when will this new behavior become automatic?
While it will be different from one person to the next and even from one habit to the next, there are a few things to keep in mind.
It’s easier to make a new habit than get rid of an old one. Be prepared to work a lot harder to give up checking your email every 2 minutes or snacking late at night. Whenever possible, try to replace an old habit with a new one. For example if you’re wanting to give up coffee, brew a cup of herbal tea in the morning and throughout the day when you would usually reach for your cup of Joe.
Habits will form faster if you stick to the same time and environment each day. Instead of going for a walk whenever, keep your sneakers next to the door and schedule your walk every day at 6pm, right after dinner for example.
A constant reminder of why you’re trying to change your behavior is also helpful. Remind yourself every day that you’re exercising so your body stays strong and you can go play with the kids or grandkids in the yard. Or put up a picture to remind you that you’re making frugal habits so you can one day purchase your dream home. Keep your reason why you’re changing front and center and then be prepared to stick it out. Yes it will take some time to make new habits and replace old ones. But it will be well worth it in the end.
Start creating your new habits and be on your way to
better health and well-being!
Aging is inevitable. No matter how hard we try, it will catch up with us eventually, but that does not mean that you have to sit back and let it prematurely take your youth away. There are things you can do starting right now to beat (ok, maybe not beat but dramatically slow down) the aging process, and maintain your youthful looks and vigor well into an age nobody will be able to guess!
These tips are extremely simple- there’s no magic pill here. Read on to find out the five keys tips you should be doing:
Sleeping is one of life’s simple pleasures, and something that should come naturally to everyone. However, more than half of the USA’s adult population is chronically sleep deprived, in the sense that they get less than the recommended 7-9 hours nightly, many days running. Sleep is the one thing that everyone has going for them, since it is the hit reset button for your body.
During sleep, repair ensues, so that proteins in skin are fixed, hormone production is ramped up, and the process of rebuilding in general. Chronic sleep deficiency inhibits the ability of the body to fix structural defects, including in DNA, which can accelerate greying of hair, wrinkling of skin and deterioration of organs.
Get Your Veggies In
Eat lots of vegetables. It doesn’t really matter which, but include a variety of different ones, as each bring something different to the table. Most vegetables are extremely low calories, making them perfect for bulk at mealtimes, as you can eat a lot, and not get a lot of calories. In addition, vegetables are full of fiber, which keep intestinal and colon health on point, as well as tons of anti-oxidants, vitamin and minerals, which fend off free radicals and compounds that damage DNA and promote aging.
Shed Bad Hobbies
Sure, watching TV late into the night is a bad habit, and it is health damaging, but it is not bad in the sense I am referring to here. The ways that I am talking about, relate to drinking, smoking and eating junk food. Excessive alcohol consumption places undue stress on the liver which has the primary job to remove toxins from the body, and in some cases makes it unable to do its job. This accumulation of toxins is bad for health, and kick starts and accelerates the aging process.
Smoking, on the other hand is worse in many aspects. With negative effects ranging from the lung damage, to compromised blood vessels and more. Smoking can age you 25 years in just 5 years. Nutrient delivery suffers, so the skin ages and wrinkles far sooner than it should, and you increase the risk of dying from complications of the lung damage.
We don’t expect you to be euphoric all day long, but being happy has proven benefits over being sad or pouty. This can be explained by endorphins, the feel good chemicals produced in the brain that boost mood, reduce heart rate and blood pressure, and reduce stress levels as well.
Practicing mindfulness meditation is one of the best ways to develop your appreciation of the little things in life, and improve your happiness and outlook not to mention the fact that frowning just speeds up the development of wrinkles and fine lines!
A little jogging, cycling or walking is good during any point of life, but in order to diminish the effects of aging, weight training is a must. Not only does muscle help you fill out your clothing, but it can also help prevent skin from sagging, wrinkling, or your posture from stooping.
Nothing screams old like a hunched back and sagging skin, but luckily, weight lifting can delay this for years to come, not only that, but your overall mobility will be kept in check, and you will look great, so hit the weights!
See, as promised these tips are simple. However, don't add stress and anxiety to your list of age accelerators by trying to incorporate all of these tips at once. Start with one, I recommend sleep, then add from there.