Three ways to help you stick to your habits

Three ways to help you stick to your habits

Remembering to do something is hard. Often it is much harder than doing the thing that you tried to remember.

Habits-to-be are exactly no habits yet. The positive thing about habits (that they are automatic and effortless) is also what makes that it is so hard to create a new habit.

In order to form habits you have to do things over and over again. This requires that you remember those things!

One of the things we all know from experience, is the fact that remembering to do new actions can be hard. No matter how much you want to drink more water, it can be really hard to do. This is not because the task itself is hard but because it is just hard to remember.

That is why a reminder might come in handy.

If you frequently use your mobile phone or email – and who doesn’t! – then you can use these three tools to help you remind:

  • Magic Reminder is an app for IPhone that allows you to create reminders that come along ‘random’ throughout the day. You can set reminders to come several times a day, daily, weekly or monthly. It is also possible to set a start time and an end time to make sure you do not receive your reminder when you are still asleep, or your afternoon tea-reminder in the morning.
  • The Android version for this app is AlarmRoller, which I am unable to test since I use iOS. However, its ratings and reviews suggest that it does the same as Magic Reminder. It can also repeat the same habit-to-be several times a day, with random intervals and between a start time and end time.
  • Hassleme sends you e-mails to remind you of your new planned behavior. You can set it from once a day to once a month. To keep you sharp Hassleme makes sure that its reminders are sent at different times so that they always come unexpectedly.

Fun fact about Hassleme is that you can also sign up multiple people for the same behavior. If you have something to be done at work, or at home it will ‘randomly’ select an e-mail address to send the reminder to. Nice for deciding on who is doing the dishes.

Using these reminders can help you think more often about your wanted behavior. This will make it easier to go from wannabe-habit to actual habit.

Curious about my daily reminder? It reminds me to take a good posture, five times a day.

If you start using daily reminders, let me know what your reminder is, I am curious to know! Or leave a message if you use other programs that work great for you.

My book project

Together with a good friend and expert in behavior, Martin Glanert, I am writing a book that will help you learn new habits. We focused on science and what is al known about habits first, and from there we created a methodology we believe in. This blog was a first peak into our ideas. More will be following, so keep tracking if you are interested!


Image courtesy of Kittikun Atsawintarangkul/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

judithmartens

judithmartens

Innovation and Research Officer at Sugar Habits
Judith studied behavioral change (applied social psychology) and is currently finishing her masters in philosophy with special attention for philosophy of action and intentionality. She works for SugarHabits a social media platform that helps people unlock more of their potential through learning new habits.
judithmartens
judithmartens
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