Updated: Aug 13, 2020
We’ve all heard this saying... "As human beings, we need others around us to thrive." A good support system will aid you in your progress, both personally and professionally. In addition, we learn from the people around us; they let us see a new perspective, a new way of doing things, and better strategies to get the most out of life.
Although sometimes I like to think so, I can recognize that sometimes my way of doing things is not necessarily the best way to do things. But without another option, what choice do you have? That’s why it’s important to learn from the people in your life, so together, you can learn and grow and find a way to do things that will give you the best bang for your buck (so to speak)!
After growing up and meeting new people, I have been fortunate to pick up new, better ways of doing things that make my days run more smoothly and make me happier overall.
How to Incorporate Someone Else’s Good Habits Into Your Lifestyle:
1. Do It Together:
My roommates are avid meal-preppers. As someone who decides what to eat ten minutes before I start to cook each meal, it was a huge difference from what I was used to. I always enjoyed being able to decide what I was going to cook based on what I was in the mood for that night… however, there were drawbacks. Sometimes, I would be in the mood for something I didn’t have the ingredients for; and sometimes, I would come home after a long day and not be enthusiastic about spending thirty minutes to an hour over the stove. You see my point!
My roommates always meal-prepped together. One Sunday night, dreading the long week ahead and anticipating that I wouldn’t have a ton of time to cook each night, I asked to take part with them. It was a bit odd at first with all of us preparing massive amounts of food and filling our fridge for the coming few days; but that Tuesday, when I was beat after a long day of working, it was so nice to come home and just heat up a full square meal in ten minutes.
Having my roommates help me as I started with this habit made it stick for me. I still leave myself room to cook when I want to (sometimes, there is no telling when you’ll be in the mood for curry when the only thing you’ve prepped is chili), but it really takes some pressure off during hectic periods of my life.
2. Try Something Out To See What Will Stick:
Sometimes, you can see someone else with a good habit. You can recognize their habit as "good"; but when you try it yourself... it might just not work, and that's okay! The only way to find out is to try.
I have a friend who is an enthusiastic runner. She runs every evening to wind down and de-stress after her day. It lets her switch from “work” mode to “home” mode, and it’s also a great workout! I’ve always admired this about her, and I saw how healthy she seemed from this habit, both physically and mentally. I thought I would try it out as well because I wanted to implement something similar in my life.
Unfortunately, I found that I am not a runner. It did not relax me at all; and I found myself dreading it each afternoon. As well as this habit worked for her, it just did not work for me.
Through trial and error, I took what I liked from her habit (the mental mellowing, the physicality, the way to differentiate between parts of your day) and found something that works for me... yoga with meditation. It’s different from what my friend does, but it serves the same purpose, and my trying out my friend’s technique helped me find my own!
3. Keep Going Until It Becomes A Habit:
As much as we wish it was different, you can’t just spot a lifestyle you want to adopt; and BOOM, it’s a part of your routine. It takes a lot of hard work to implement change, especially if it doesn’t come naturally!
Whether it’s making To-Do Lists at the start of each day and going until everything is checked off (a habit taken from my sister)... or saying "hi" to each neighbor you pass in the hallway of your building (taken from my neighbor, coincidentally)... it might not feel natural at first if you’re not used to doing those actions each day. Change takes time!
But if you make up your mind that you want to make a change and become more productive or healthier or friendlier or more centered on yourself... you have to decide to make that change. Find something that works for you, and stick with it until it fits seamlessly into your routine. One day, it will seem weird to you that, at some point in time, you didn’t greet all of your neighbors in the elevator. I promise.
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Written by Jordan McAndrew