I’d like to share a brilliant tip with you today, to help you overcome just about any bad habit or undesirable pattern that keeps showing up in your life. It’s called “living in day tight compartments”.
It means living one day at a time, with greater present-focus, and not spending so much energy worrying about tomorrow.
It means developing the ability to delay gratification (such as the immediate reward you get from a bad habit that later has you feeling guilty) for just one day – giving yourself permission to go back to it tomorrow, but for today, you’re not going to do it.
It means you can achieve anything, seriously anything, if you just give it some effort today.
It’s all in how you talk to yourself, and that self-talk has to be full of great feelings. Tell yourself, “I’m not going to worry about that today. Today I’m going to have a happy break from that problem. I can worry about it tomorrow”. Then the next morning, tell yourself again, “I’m not going to worry about that today. I’m going to have a happy break from that problem. I can worry about it tomorrow”. In the meantime, your mind is busy coming up with a solution that you would never have considered if you were stuck in the infinite worry loop!
And of course, the brilliant part is that you repeat the very same behavior the next day – telling yourself that today is not the day to do (x) or that today you can spend a little time doing (y). Today. Not tomorrow. We’re focused 100% on what you will, or will not, do TODAY.
Tell yourself, “I don’t need to have a drink today. I like the clarity and control I have when I don’t drink. I’ll feel better if I wait until tomorrow”. Then repeat that the next day.
Tip: Be your own cheerleader!
Tell yourself, “I can work on this goal for 15 minutes today”. Then repeat that the next day.
Tip: Make your new habits tiny so that you can’t talk yourself out of them because you’ve made them too big to be sustainable.
Will you fail to follow through? Sometimes, yes. Some habits are easier to change than others. But what if you were to remain consistent? You would create new thought habits, which in turn become behavioral habits.
Today in meditation, think about something you do on a day-to-day basis that doesn’t serve you (drinking, smoking, worrying, overeating, not exercising, not meditating, procrastinating, etc.) and come up with a “catch phrase” that you can use whenever you have the urge to do that thing. If you can talk yourself into FEELING GOOD about NOT doing this thing just once, you can do it a second time, and a third, and a seventieth.
And in this small, persistent (and yes, slightly sneaky) way, you can dramatically change your life one day at a time!
To end today’s blog post here’s what Dr. Denis Waitley has to say about habits…
Habits are like submarines. They run silent and deep. Habits grow by observation, imitation and repetition from cobwebs into cables to strengthen or shackle our lives. First we make our habits, then our habits make us.