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Habits are hard to build and even harder to break. But cultivating a daily habit that can change your life is a goal worth trying to reach. It will ensure long-term success.

Try and maintain a habit from this list of 5 daily habits for a period of 3-4 weeks and it will automatically form into a daily habit for you. But if you need more time then take it. Don’t beat yourself down if you couldn’t pick up a habit even after 3 weeks.

Go easy on yourself. Take as long as you need but make sure that once you have decided to inculcate a particular habit, you don’t stop till you actually have.

It might take a little time getting used to it and in some cases you might have to rewire / recondition your brain to break a habit you’ve been doing for the past several years but it’s a chance worth taking if it helps you be more productive, isn’t it?

And remember to reward yourself, even in the tiniest possible way, after you hit a milestone in your habit-building process. This will keep you motivated to keep going.

#1 Stay Hydrated

I shouldn’t even have to tell you this one. Water is one of the, if not the MOST, vital component for our survival.

More importantly, drink water FIRST thing in the morning. This will help rehydrate the body after the sleep you’ve had and it’ll help expel the toxins that have built up overnight.

Dehydration causes fatigue, headaches, nausea and dizziness. Lack of enough water in the body also causes dry skin, lack of energy and irritability. None of this sounds nice, does it?

Now that I’ve told you the harm, I’ll get to the benefits. Water regulates the temperature in the body, cleanses your system and improves bodily functions. It also improves metabolism leaving you feeling energised.

#2 Set Goals Daily

It doesn’t take long to create a list and set daily goals, right? Probably around 10-15 mins, 5 if you are quick enough. This daily habit is something everyone overlooks but will create the most impact in terms of productivity. And eventually it will be an essential daily habit that changes your life.

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Create and set aside a list of goals the previous night or make one in the morning. Prioritise them from most important to least. This will put your tasks into perspective which will help you tackle and achieve them in a better manner.

Setting daily goals will also declutter your mind and help you concentrate on the important tasks first. Which means now you can accomplish your goals sooner by focusing on and completing the most impactful tasks first.

Imagine the sense of achievement you’ll feel when you accomplish your goals one by one. Keep that visual in mind and power on!

#3 Do one thing at a time

I know what you’re thinking. If I multitask, I can get 3 things done in the same amount of time than if I spend it all on one thing. That’s where you’re mistaken. Multitasking tricks you into thinking you’re completing more tasks when instead you are actually doing none in the stipulated time.

Studies have shown that multitasking actually increases the time spent on all 3 things than what you would have taken doing them individually one after the other.

This is because your brain takes time to adjust for every new item you start doing. Our brains are wired to find a way to do things faster hence it tries to find a solution which it can perform in a rhythm or by rote without using much brain power.

But imagine you switch between chopping vegetables, making tea/coffee and working the toaster. Your brain starts conditioning itself to chop vegetables faster but you suddenly switch to adding tea powder into the utensil or coffee into the pot and then switch to putting bread in the toaster and starting the timer.

Your brain has lost the rhythm and now has to condition itself to switch between tasks while also remembering the last point at which you left the previous task. Imagine if you forgot that you already added the tea/coffee powder and add some more. Or you put the timer on for longer than usual.

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#4 Disconnect to reconnect

If the recent social distancing situation has taught us anything it’s that sometimes disconnecting is good. It helps us reconnect with ourselves and our loved ones who we might not be able to make time for otherwise, given our daily routine.

Modern gadgets have separated us rather than bringing us closer to the people we love and disconnecting from them will give you a chance to have real, meaningful, heart-to-heart conversations with your loved ones.

Put the distractions away. Self-reflect, reconnect with yourself and try to find ways to do and be better. This is probably one of the toughest habits that you will have to cultivate but it will be the best one for your mind, body and soul. 

#5 Be positive (as cliché as that might sound)

Often the outlook you have on a situation can make all the difference. That’s why this is an essential habit to develop to change your life for the better. There is already so much negativity, not just on social media but around the world in general that there’s no dearth of things to be upset or angry about.

So, let’s focus on minimising negativity by spreading positivity and keeping ourselves motivated to achieve more. Positivity helps you deal with failures and disappointments better. You’ll also be able to handle stress better. Instead of feeling bad that your presentation didn’t go as planned, motivate yourself to do better next time.

To cultivate this habit, you’ll have to follow the 3-step rule:

Firstly, declutter your social media accounts of all the negativity. Follow accounts that put out positive thoughts, inspirational and motivational quotes.

Secondly, build yourself up. In a world of instant gratification and ephemeral positivity, try and motivate yourself every day. We always feel that someone looks better, dresses better, has a better life, etc. We compare everyone’s highlight reel with our entire story and that isn’t fair.

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Nobody’s life is perfect. There will always be someone better. But just imagine, if you feel this way, there will be people who feel the same about you. So, stop craving for someone else’s life or possessions.

Thirdly, be grateful for everything you have. Keep telling yourself how blessed you are. Whether it is to have a home, a loving family, a job, whatever your reasons to be grateful, list them and count your blessings.

“Some people are always grumbling because roses have thorns; I am thankful that thorns have roses.” 

– Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr

Appreciate your loved ones, thank people if they do something nice for you, compliment strangers, think of at least one thing that you are grateful for when you wake up in the morning and before heading to sleep.

They say, simple things make the most difference. Similarly, these simple habits will have the most impact. Progress might be gradual but eventually these daily habits will change your life and help you achieve your goals.

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