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How to Make a Habit Stick

Purition21 Feb 2018
How to Make a Habit Stick

Here at Purition we believe that healthy eating is a habit to cultivate so a recent speech at a US psychology conference had our ears twitching with interest.

University of Southern California

As Psychologist Professor Wendy Wood from the University of Southern California explained, the three steps that can help you make a healthy intention a healthy habit are...

  1. Create a new window of opportunity: New habits don’t slot brilliantly into old lives so try to make a simple change that turns the change into a fresh start. For example, if you’re trying to eat more healthily start to shop at the local greengrocers and butchers rather than going to your normal supermarket. If you want to start exercising, why not get up an hour earlier and head to the gym rather than trying to change your normal evening routine to fit it in.
  2. Repetition is key: Exactly how long it takes to form a new habit is something scientists argue over but what they all agree on is the more you repeat any behaviour the more likely you are to stick to it. Whatever your goal, consistency is key.
  3. Link behaviours: It’s easier to remember to do a new behaviour if it’s linked to an old one. So, maybe set your alarm ringtone to a motivating song on exercise days – when you hear that song you know you’re going to work out. Or if you’re trying to drink more water, tell yourself you’ll take your glass and fill it up every time you go to the bathroom.

Changing one thing at a time is important to help with the transition. You could make one change to your diet such as a healthier breakfast choice to give you more energy and make lifestyle change easier.

Author: Helen Foster

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