Breaking bad habits can be tricky but to be an effective leader you need to be able to change patterns of behaviour that are not serving you and your team.
90 days ago I set myself a challenge not to drink, and I have spent the last three months alcohol-free. Completing the challenge left me feeling great… and not so great.
The not so great is that I don’t believe I have really felt the full impact of the benefits of my alcohol-free adventure because I was waylaid by Glandular Fever over the summer and went to ground! I am sure it made the process of not drinking easier but my ‘why’ for doing this was to increase my sense of vitality, energy and general wellbeing.
However, I am proud that I have stuck to it and managed to navigate my way through a holiday, various social events (including the oh so painful school Halloween disco) a funeral, and a wedding! It’s fascinating just how much of our social life revolves around drinking and so much of it is purely habit from our autopilot way of living life.
It has led me to look much deeper into the psychology of habits and how it influences the work that I do with my clients. Here are some nuggets for you to consider…
• 40% of our actions are not conscious decisions but habits. That’s almost half of your life!
• Habits never truly disappear but are just overpowered by other habits. Choose wisely.
• Habits are the brains’ way of creating efficiency Are you being efficient in the right areas of your life?
• Cue-routine-reward is what creates a habit loop. Look for the triggers that influence your brain to feel an emotion or engage in an activity or behaviour and the reward is how your brain determines whether the loop is beneficial or not to you. Self-awareness is key.
• “I can’t help it!” This is nonsense. You have the power to take control of the processes that take place in your brain. You can change it by replacing the routine in the habit loop with a behaviour or action that creates the same level of reward with the one you are replacing it with.
• Habits fall into two categories – wanted and unwanted. Your job is to discern one from the other and then take action accordingly.
We are all a product of our habits, so you can become the leader you want to be by developing good habits. Write down the leadership qualities you want to embody. You then need these turn these qualities into habits by being disciplined and consistent in your mindset and behaviour.
If you need help forming leadership habits that will help you and team perform, get in touch to arrange a discovery call via email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07748 686539.