Do you use your daily habits to improve life? Think about it – many of the actions that we do from day to day are governed by habits. We all have a mixture of good and bad habits, myself included. So how can we start using daily habits to improve life for ourselves? I’ll share some of what seems to be working for me, but first, let’s look at how to get good habits, how to stick to them, get rid of bad ones, and a list of good personal habits anyone can adopt!
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What Are Personal Habits?
According to dictionary.com, the definition of a habit is, “an acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it has become almost involuntary.” Yikes! Sounds like a pretty powerful influence in our lives, doesn’t it? Each of us has good personal habits and bad personal habits. There are always daily habits to improve life that we can add, or daily habits that don’t improve our life that we can subtract. The power is in your hands. It’s your life; you are in control.
How Do I Get Good Habits?
The first step is becoming aware of our habits. You can’t do anything about something you don’t realize you are doing. It’s no secret that successful people have great habits. Guess what? Success leaves footprints that we can follow, so that’s great news for us! Here are a few things you can do to start building daily habits to improve life:
- Define Your Goal
- Find Your “Why”
- Integrate the new good habit into your routine
- Reward yourself for consistency with your new habit
- Track your progress
- Have a support system or accountability partner.
How Do I Stick to Good Daily Habits to Improve Life?
Sticking to your good personal habits that improve your life is the hard part, isn’t it? It’s easy to say you’re going to start doing something new, but the day in and day out gets rather hard. I find myself doing good for a week or two, but then before I know it, I find them slipping away. Let’s look at some simple ways to make those slippery good personal habits stick!
- Start Small
- Anchor your new good habit to an existing habit
- Adjust your environment to encourage the habit
- Schedule your new habit
- Reward small successes
How Can I Stop Bad Habits?
In with the good out with the bad. Sounds simple right? When you are trying to cultivate daily habits to improve life, part of that is getting rid of bad habits. Lifehacker has some suggestions for stopping bad habits, but these are my favorites:
- Use self talk to your advantage. (For example, if you are trying to get up earlier, start thinking to yourself, “ I’m a morning person.” throughout the day. That way when your alarm goes off, you will find yourself thinking, “I’m a morning person” instead of “noo… snooooozzeee….”)
- Replace the bad habit with a healthier one. For example, I LOVE chocolate, but I can replace my sugar-laden milk chocolate for dark chocolate, which is healthier.
- Restructure your environment – it’s hard to have afternoon chocolate if there is (sadly) none in the house.
What are 10 Good Daily Habits to Improve Life?
Good daily habits to improve your life mostly fall into one of the following categories:
- Health and Wellness
Check out this list of 10 good daily habits to improve your life. These are all things that I have personally done, or try to do on a consistent basis. Just like you, I slip up from time to time and struggle to keep my habits consistent. Remember to give yourself grace, when you don’t quite make it. But just as important as giving yourself grace when you mess up, is getting back on the horse and riding. One of the biggest factors of success is persistence.
List Of 10 Good Daily Habits to Improve Life
Good Daily Habit #1. Make Your Bed
Wait, hang on, how is making your bed a good personal habit to improve your life? I confess, I used to think this was the most useless suggestion and waste of time ever, but I wasn’t seeing the big picture.
Life is composed of a lot of small things that add up. Your environment influences how productive you are during the day as well as your mental state. It’s hard to relax or get any work done in a messy environment.
Making your bed in the morning is a good personal habit because it accomplishes something first thing in the morning. It puts you in a productive mindset and neatens up your environment, making it easier to relax when you get back home.
Good Daily Habit #2. Exercise
For us to be more effective at anything, exercising is a great daily habit to improve life. Our mental and physical health are linked. It’s hard to be happy or productive when we don’t feel well. Exercise helps maintain or improve your physical health. It also releases endorphins, which boost our mood and it relieves stress. In a modern world where we are exposed to constant stress, we need every edge we can get. That makes exercise a very good personal habit to cultivate.
Good Daily Habit #3. Journal
Did you know that many famous people, such as Leonardo Di Vinci, Benjamin Franklin, Mark Twain, Winston Churchill and many more kept journals? Journaling is a great daily habit to improve life for many reasons. You can use your journal to:
- clear your mind
- organize your day
- make better decisions
- cultivate gratitude
- sort out feelings and thoughts
- record great ideas for later
- promote self-awareness through reflection
Related: Find the perfect type of journaling for you
Good Daily Habit # 4. Read the Bible and Pray
This is a daily habit to improve life that I am currently trying to incorporate in my daily routine. We all have a spiritual aspect to our lives. When we take the time to read the Bible and to pray it helps us to build a stronger relationship with the Lord. It helps us feel him closer and draw strength and encouragement from him. We all need encouragement day by day and renewing. For me, this is a great way to get it, though, in all honesty, I am still trying to find where it fits best in my day.
Related: 18 Bible verses for hard times you need to read
Good Daily Habit # 5. Drink More Water
I know you’ve heard that you should drink 8 eight-ounce glasses of water daily. But what good does it do you? Why does drinking water fall under one of the daily habits to improve life? Turns out, drinking water might have more health benefits than you might think. Drinking water can:
- make you feel better physically, especially after exercise
- reduce headaches
- boost your energy level and brain function
- improve your mood
- relieve constipation
- decrease the risk of kidney stones
- help with weight loss
Good Daily Habit # 6. Get enough sleep
Just like with drinking enough water, getting enough sleep is a good personal habit that has many positive benefits. Like many other people, getting enough sleep is something that I struggle with. However, some of the benefits of getting enough sleep are:
- improved memory and brainpower
- better mood
- a healthier heart
- more stable blood sugar
- better muscle recovery
- better immune system
- weight control
After reading all those benefits, I think I may be hitting the sack a little earlier tonight. How about you?
Related: 16 Easy Ways to Still Your Mind So You Can Sleep
Good Daily Habit # 7. Think Positive and Practice Gratitude
Cultivating positive thoughts has many benefits. Among the more obvious ones are that a positive attitude will help you become more happy and content with your life. Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it. Try to see tough times as opportunities for personal growth. We can’t always control everything in our life, but trying to think positive is one of my favorite daily habits to improve life.
Speaking of thinking positive, practicing gratitude is a great way to do that. It shifts our focus to what we have and the current blessings in our lives. I bet there was a time in your life that you prayed for what you have now. Taking the time to stop and remember those things we are grateful for is a huge mood booster, and puts a whole different perspective on our lives.
Related: Get the most from your gratitude list
Good Daily Habit #8. Smile
While you may not be saying “cheese” all the time for a picture, smiling is a good personal habit. For starters, it makes you seem more approachable and you may get more opportunities that come your way because of it. You may start off feeling fake when you are smiling. However, you may find yourself faking it and then making it. Even a fake smile can boost your mood. It also helps to retrain your brain to think more positively. It also boosts your productivity and creativity. Pretty cool for something that’s free and takes minimal effort, right?
Good Daily Habit # 9. Schedule your time/Make a to-do list
I love my to-do lists. They make me feel so much more productive and there is a simple joy about being able to cross things off as you get them done. When you make a to-do list and schedule your time, it increases your productivity. You don’t sit down at night and think “what did I get done today?” It’s a great daily habit to improve your life because it makes you feel productive.
Related: Stay on task and focused with these 5 quick tips
Boost your productivity with time blocking
How to overcome procrastination and laziness
Good Daily Habit #10. Listen to Podcasts or Read to Keep Learning
Did you know that the average CEO reads a book a week? Great leaders are readers and are always learning. It never ceases to amaze me that many of the people that I look up to and admire are always talking about a book they are reading, a course they are taking, or a podcast they are listening to. We are never too old to learn. It keeps the brain limber and a podcast or audiobook can also take dead space in our schedules (Like commuting) and turn it into productive time.
You can get 2 free audiobooks from audible, if you are curious about audiobooks, or ask your local library. For podcasts, I have been listening to Jim Kwik’s podcast about how to improve memory power and boost brain function. What’s your favorite podcast?
Which Habits Are Most Useful?
The question of which good personal habits are most useful largely depends on you. What are you trying to accomplish? For example, my habits of waking up in my exercise clothes and putting my sneakers by the door to encourage me to get up and go for a walk as soon as the kids are off to school would not work for my husband, that has to get up, shower, and get ready for work. Pick the habits that seem the most useful to you.
If you would like to see a bigger list of good personal habits to improve life, you might like this list of 10 daily habits from Forbes, or this list of 101 good habits from Entrepreneur.
If you liked my list of good personal habits and would like to see them in checklist form, enter your email below. 🙂
What Good Daily Habits to Improve Life Should I Develop?
If I had to pick one good daily habit to improve life to focus on, it would be gratitude. Gratitude shifts your whole mindset and takes you from thinking of what you don’t have to what you do have. It’s a major part of learning to be happy and content with your life.
Pick the habits that are most relevant to you and your goals and start small when you start developing them. Trying to make radical lifestyle changes all at once rarely sticks. So pick ONE to start with, and go from there. I know you can do this! I believe in you!
The Last Thing You Need to Know About Good Daily Habits to Improve Life
Good daily habits to improve life are a series of small steps that you do every day. For myself, that means developing and constantly trying to perfect the way that I juggle my time in my morning and evening routines as well as during the day. We all have some good personal habits already as well as some that we need to improve. Keep the good, get rid of the bad, and keep questing for contentment in your life!