Nudge and be nudged

Even with the best intentions in mind, we still occasionally need a little poke in the back, a reminder of our commitment to ourselves. Consider the following:

  • Add your intended behaviour as an appointment in your agenda. For example, if you decide to regularly dedicate your best focus time to work that requires deep concentration, block these hours in your agenda. Or, if you choose to do a five-minute breathing exercise at 3pm daily, block these minutes in your agenda and set the timer to alert you 5 minutes beforehand.
  • Surround yourself with people who share the habits you want to have yourself, for example, agree with a colleague (even virtually) on a set lunch-time walk. Or share an exercise plan with your partner, even if it’s just a walk around the block.

While it may feel strange to write certain entries in your agenda (‘10.30pm – bedtime’) or even annoying to have someone else remind you of what you might prefer to forget, those small cues can provide just that extra little push needed to turn a new habit into an automatic one.