Each day at school I have a few key practices that really help me to maintain my mental triggers. The students and staff think I am a little crazy with one of them but I am more concerned with my habit formation than what people think.
Whenever I come to a set of stairs I need to go up I literally “hit the stairs running!”
I am not trying to make a statement but rather to keep a healthy habit by connecting the run with every time I approach stairs.
Another thing I do to help maintain my sanity is to practice deep breathing every time I enter the elevator at school. As soon as the elevator door closes I get some really deep breaths in to help calm my stress down.
As simple and mundane as these habits and triggers seem it can be that easy to get on the road to new habits.
Mental triggers are one of the fastest and most effective ways to build new habits.
All you need to do is tie your new behavior to a trigger, something you do everyday, so that your brain can start mapping the new desirable behavior.
No matter who you are, your brain can change and this a great way to get it rolling!
In our last post we talked about the motivation energy needed to get habits started.
This process of using mental or behavioral triggers is an automatic win we actually create for ourselves to keep that motivational energy high so we can power through and create the systems necessary to carry us through to ingrained habits.
One of the cool things about using simple triggers we engage in every day is we have the ability to chain them together throughout our day to create the life we love.
Here is an example.
As you get up in the morning you have a bottle of water right by your alarm so before you even get up you have a large drink of water to start your body off right.
As you walk into the bathroom your workout clothes are already laid on the counter so you just slip them on.
As you walk into the front room your workout equipment is out in the location you need it for your workout.
As you stop to get your kids breakfast ready you pause at the refrigerator because you have a trigger to think of a positive thought each time you open the door.
And on and on and on.
Your habits and new life are basically predetermined by the triggers and behaviors you already have set and in this example it’s only 6:00 AM!
You have already won the day! Now you're ready to win in life!
Now you need to look at your habits and routines and find out which ones you could build triggers into to make this healthy new life a reality!
I am here to help you on this journey!
Come check out our resources in other sections of The Healthy Educator!