A funny thing happened in our kitchen recently: We put in a new faucet. Not that funny on the face of it, but it had a different design than our last faucet. We have to turn the hot and cold water on with a different fixture. It seems more set up for a left-handed person. My wife and son really didn’t like it at first and wondered if we could somehow change the configuration. The funny thing is, after a few days no one seemed to notice or care that it was different. You see, the new system just became habit by default.
I’m often trying to change the habits of my patients, be they habits of physical exercise, keeping their adjustment schedule or weight loss. Most things in life come down to habit. I talk often about prepping my food for the day, sometimes that means cooking enough chicken to last me three days. Getting my workout clothes ready the night before, making a healthy smoothie in the morning, but also enough to last me the day. Making sure I have my lunch supplements with me at the office.
Weight loss is more complicated than just habit, but sometimes it just isn’t. There are people who have built the habit of not eating pizza at every kid’s party they attend. It wasn’t easy, but now it’s habit. Some of my truck drivers no longer stop at Dunkin Donuts EVERY day. They bring their own coffee and that cuts down on the temptation to stop at D and D. The problem with the habit of stopping at D and D is that Boston Creme donuts tend to call your name. You almost have to answer and you tell yourself: “Just this one time”. Not realizing that you are building a habit.
So, how are your habits? Is it time for an inventory? What habits are keeping you from your best life? I’ll admit that my family really didn’t have much of a choice to not use the kitchen sink. However, it’s amazing how fast it became natural to use the new system. In fact, it is now just habit.
So take a look at your life. What habits are serving you? What habits can you eliminate or add? I don’t know who said it, but it is very true: Good habits are easy to live with but hard to make; bad habits are easy to make, but hard to live with. For me, life is too short to live with habits that don’t further my best life. So take a look at your life, then go out and get your best today.