Bad habits take time to shift.
My life is amazing and I’ve picked up some bad habits — like not exercising. I’ve shifted my eating habits but exercise is not on my radar as I think it should be. I am in awe of other people who love to exercise religiously.
I want to live until I’m one hundred years old, and live healthy, and that includes becoming my own life coach, and moving my butt and whole body. The thought of exercising 4 to 5 times a week for a lifetime seems impossible.
I think to myself, "I’m not one of those people. Exercising my whole life — no way! It’s too hard."
Slowly — and I mean slowly — I’m exercising 3 to 4 times a week and for longer periods of time. Surprisingly, now I’m honoring that time and I'm happy to strap on my tennis shoes, set up the computer, hit the video play button and sweat for 20 minutes.
That was never going to happen without starting a new habit and kicking the old habit of working morning, noon, and night.
One of the things I’m realizing is that bad habits take time to shift. It’s not an overnight thing.
When dating, I had this awful habit of looking for the bad in him, or any man I dated.
I was the queen of criticism, always looking for what doesn’t work about him. I often found so many things and instantly killed off any kind of possibility before it even got started. He and I were doomed from the start.
Yes, it’s important to look for what works and what doesn’t work, but I knew I had to shift this habit into one that forwards my goals of being in a healthy and fulfilling relationship, or I was going to be single forever!
Habit #1: Look more for the good things than the bad.
For example, Stefan is very organized and much more organized than me. Instead of thinking, "He is so overly structured and organized." I feel like a slob sometimes and I am not (a slob). Well, compared to him I am.
My point is, I have turned the thought into, "Wow, I’m so happy he is organized, it makes my life easier because he is tidy and there is less for me to do!"
Habit #2: Ask yourself: Does this issue really matter?
Is it really a big deal? I leave my socks on the floor sometimes and it makes Stefan crazy. I’m better at picking them up, but not perfect. He lets it go now. In the grand scheme of things, does it really matter?
Habit #3: If something is bothering you, bring it up nicely, sweetly, and playfully.
I learned that this is very helpful, and supports our relationship. And boy, that goes a long way. It allows him to be able to hear my communication as productive instead of dramatic and nasty.
Did all of this happen overnight? Gosh no, it takes time. Do you have the patience to allow yourself and someone else to be human and work together to shift habits from bad to good?
Suzanne Muller-Heinz believes every person is capable of being in a healthy and fulfilling relationship. It just requires some new skills. She's the author of Loveable: 21 Practices for Being in a Loving & Fulfilling Relationship. If you're a woman ready to discover what's really possible for you, grab your free gift, visit www.happylivingforever.com.
This article was originally published at Happy Living Forever. Reprinted with permission from the author.