The amazing power of changing habits

Changing one habit can really change your whole life. You don't believe me? Read on to find out more. Not so long ago I came across this idea of making a habit of changing habits that I described in my article Habits or Discipline. I decided to apply it and check if it really worked. To my surprise, it did. My initial goal was to lose a few kilograms. But instead of signing up to the gym I decided to use a different tactic. I wanted to attack the problem from a different angle because the exercise idea had not worked for me a few times. I decided to start by changing my eating habits.


The amazing power of changing habits

What happened after that is simply unbelievable. 

  1. I lost 13 kg in less than 2 months (I know it was 8 kg in my article about Habits or Discipline. It's now 13 kg and still counting)
  2. I became a blogger. I actually started writing this blog in order to keep myself busy and forget about food. As a computer geek I had not written even a paragraph in more than 15 years.
  3. I suddenly became more productive and creative. All those hidden talents started appearing. Before I knew it, I was already working on 4 big projects at the same time. In 2 months I did more than I had done in more than 10 years.
  4. Since I was so busy, I didn't have time to watch TV. I went from watching TV at least 3 hours per day to no TV at all, without even thinking about it or trying hard. 
  5. As a network administrator I used to spend a lot of time in front of the computer. You can imagine how that affected my personal life. I can't even remember the last time I met someone new and made friends. I had more than 100 friends on my Facebook friends list, but that was just a number. They were just there and I didn't communicate with them. That has all changed. Since I began blogging I have made a lot of friends both online and offline.
  6. Changing habits and blogging has made me more confident. I am actually in the process of changing my job, something I had been hesitating to do for more than 10 years.
  7. I started reading more often. I am not talking about PC magazines that I had been reading for years. I am talking about books that are good for your soul, like Getting Things Done by David Allen, Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki, The Power of Less by Leo Babauta and similar stuff. I am really a changed man. It reminds me of the days they used to call me a bookworm.
  8. When I came across this quote - "It is well to be up before daybreak, for such habits contribute to health, wealth, and wisdom" by the famous Greek philosopher Aristotle, it felt so true I had to give it a try. So I started working on a new habit of becoming an early riser. i believe the health part of the saying has been taken care of. I feel much better and my energy level is high throughout the day. What is left is the wealth and wisdom. I am keeping my fingers crossed.
  9. On another one of my reading escapades I came across the article "How To Stop Putting Things Off - Stop Procrastination" on what has become one of my favourite blogs Putting things off was one of my biggest problems. There was always something more important or interesting to do. Thanks to this article, I am now really gettings things done when they should be done.
  10. You know what? I even stopped drinking fuzzy drinks, eating cakes, sweets and most of the unhealthy food I used to love so much. My life has completely changed for the better. Sometimes I even find myself wondering why I used to do all that stuff that did not do my body or brain any good. I don't know about you, but I now think it was a form of masochism.

This is a list of just the first ten changes that came to my mind. 

All stories must have a moral, right? Now what is the moral of my story? Changing a single habit can bring huge, unexpected benefits. For me it's like a chain reaction with no end in sight. I hope to continue working on new habits, getting things done as well as to fulfill the wealth and wisdom part of what Aristotle said, "It is well to be up before daybreak, for such habits contribute to health, wealth, and wisdom." :-)

Have you tried forming new habits? Have you been successful? If you have tips that can change people's lives do not hesitate to leave a comment below.

Tue, 09 Oct 2012