In a previous Nour Noon Nugget, I suggested that we all must create and reinforce personal and professional boundaries. To build on that idea, here are a few more tidbits for you:
- One of the fundamental causes of unnecessary drama in our lives is unclear or outright bad boundaries.
- The first step to making any major change in your life is always awareness.
- Having nonexisting or bad boundaries doesn’t make us bad people; it just makes us normal people trying to avoid feeling pain and isolation by behaving in ways that ultimately cause us to feel the very pain and isolation we’re trying to avoid.
- The great news is that if you amplify your awareness of where and when your boundaries don’t exist, aren’t clear, or are particularly poignant, you can make a conscious decision to upgrade them, regardless of how uncomfortable or scary they may be. Maybe it’s time to take back some control of your personal and professional life!
- Healthy boundaries are especially critical when it comes to creating new habits because to stay the course, you can’t afford to have your time, space, and energy structured by outside forces.
- If you let your beliefs be swayed by naysayers or attention consumed (often unconsciously) by less than productive, constructive, and positive people in your life, you’ll hinder your happiness, growth, and prosperity.
So, how do you form a habit? You make a concerted decision to change. This isn’t some intellectual exercise on the need to change or how better your life would be IF you changed. This is a bias for action. Make a new habit a part of your regular, everyday activities. Make it as non-negotiable and thoughtless as brushing your teeth or getting out of bed in the morning. Schedule it, protect it, defend it, and thrive in it.
Successful people I’ve met over the years have consistently good habits. Those who often fail to meet their full potential have lousy or nonexistent habits. Because habits are all the things we do automatically, without thinking, they help to define who we are. If you’re in the habit of getting up early every morning and working out, you’re in shape. If you’re in the habit of seldom doing what you say you’ll do, you’re unreliable!
Pay attention to the areas of your life that you’re not so thrilled about, figure out which bad habits helped create them, and trade those habits for some good ones. Here are three I’m committing to this year:
- Consistent thought leadership – here in the forum, on LinkedIn, and in my Forbes column.
- Consistent relationship outreach – to important people in my life, to check in, get caught up, learn of their new adventures, and how I can support their efforts.
- Consistent ZERO Stich policy – I own too many clothes, so I’m not buying any new ones. And if I’m gifted any, they go in a suitcase that I’ll unpack after I’ve donated most of what’s in my closet now!
How about you? What 1-2 new habits do you need to embrace to redefine or reinvent yourself? David Nour