January is all about setting new goals and making resolutions, but what’s important to remember is these new habits need to last way past the first month and into the full year. Whether your 2016 goal is to hit the gym more often, eat healthier, or beat poor posture, the path to success is paved with a systematic approach to forming long lasting habits.
Two experts in the field of human behavior change that we can turn to for advice is the creator of “Tiny Habits”, BJ Fogg, and author of New York best seller “Power of Habit”, Charles Duhigg. From these two experts, one concept that lends itself to be one of the most important aspects of habit formation is “cueing” or “triggering”.
BJ Fogg, in the Fogg Behavior Model explains that if you have a behavior that is easy or accessible, it will require less motivation but requires a trigger (or cue) to initiate the behavior. Similarly, Charles Duhigg created a three-step habit circle for creating long lasting behaviors: cue, routine, and reward (see diagram below).
To see this in practice, let’s take a look at the Lumo Lift for practicing better posture habits as an example. To create a long lasting behavior change, we will need a cue, routine and reward for staying in good posture.
Cue: Wearing the Lumo Lift and setting it up to vibrate when you slouch.
Maintaining good posture throughout the day is just as much a mental challenge as it is a physical one. Once you learn how to get into beautiful, confident posture, the challenge then is to remember to stay in it throughout the day.
The very act of wearing your Lumo Lift can be enough of a cue to help remind you to be mindful of your posture all day long. The bonus here are the subtle vibrations the Lumo Lift provides when it detects slouching that acts as an extra deterrent to falling back into poor posture.
Routine: Sitting up in good, healthy posture.
The routine is the actual habit you want to reinforce. In this case, it would be working to stay in a back-friendly position with your shoulders back, core engaged, and chin up.
Reward: Achieving posture goals / reducing back pain / feeling better
The reward section of the habit circle is the section that you have most control over, and is surprisingly the step that many of us leave out! Each time you complete the designated task or activity that you set off as your resolution, you’ll want to give yourself some sort of reward to associate positive feelings with completing the task and make you want to do it all over again. The reward can really be anything, though it’s wise to avoid food-related rewards (unless it’s a healthy treat!).
In the case of the Lumo Lift, the reward for practicing good posture all day long can be the feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment for achieving your daily posture goal, the relief from back pain or discomfort from chronic slouching, or implementing your own reward system of check marks, a dollar in the jar, or perhaps even a massage!
The habit circle model applies to all sorts of habits not limited to posture, so go ahead and give it a try for your 2016 New Year’s Resolution.
Start your habit change and maintain great posture in 2016 with Lumo Lift
Lumo Lift is a small lightweight wearable that tracks and coaches you on your posture, as well as tracks daily activity, such as steps taken, distance traveled and calories burned. Compatible with iOS/iPhone, Windows desktop and select Android devices. Free shipping, 30-day money back guarantee and 1 year limited warranty.
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