Health & Wellness Magazine Live + Thrive Magazine - Summer 2018 - Page 14

STARTING A HABIT Darya R ose HOW TO START A HABIT YOU DON'T ENJOY SOMETHING AMAZING happened this morning. Instead of hopping out of bed, having breakfast, then plunging myself headlong into work, I casually sipped my coffee, ate my muesli, then wandered into my office for a 30 minute meditation session before even turning on my computer. What’s amazing isn’t that I’ve done this once, but that I’ve been doing it for months. Even more amazing is that I love it. Meditation is not an easy habit to develop, because the reward is not immediate or obvious. Sure I know what the reward is in theory. Meditation is supposed to help me focus better, reduce stress and increase contentment. It should help me be more creative and do better work. It should help me build deeper relationships with the people I love. It should be easier for me to appreciate the important things. Only it’s incredibly frustrating to try to focus on my breath when new thoughts distract me every few seconds. It takes time out of my day I could really use for other important things. And during most of the session I feel like a total failure. I want all those benefits, but gawd I’d rather watch paint dry. Of course meditation isn’t the only habit that fits in the “I know I should, but this really doesn’t feel very rewarding” category. I felt the exact same way about flossing my teeth, which I now do daily (even on vacation!). For you maybe it’s getting enough exercise or eating vegetables that still feels more like a chore than a rewarding habit. So how can you get over the hump? When you struggle to form a new habit the easiest thing to do is blame yourself for being ill-equipped or blame the world for conspiring against you. But you and I both know that’s a cop-out. Instead of bemoaning 14