Leaping onto something new — be it a new job, a newlywed life, a vegan diet, motherhood, or freelancing — can be scary.
You’re not used to the newness and if possible, you’d rather fall back into your comfort zone. You wouldn’t want to change your habit let alone build a new lifestyle. But life isn’t meant to be stagnant. Like it or not, you will always face changes in your life and sometimes you can’t control them. But other times, you can control or orchestrate change. And that depends on your newfound values and experience.
Making Something Into A Lifestyle
The thing about change is that unless we make it into a habit, it won’t stick. You’ll always go a few steps back or even back to zero.
A few years ago, I started learning German in a class for a year. I tried to continue with self-study but eventually, it faltered. I didn’t make much time for it and I didn’t have much accountability either. Soon, as other stuff took over my life, I put German on the back burner. Now, I’m back to nearly zero.
In retrospect, there were a few factors that led to my giving up German. One of them is the fact that I didn’t make it a priority. But the mother of all reasons is that I didn’t have much of a reason to continue learning German once the dream of studying in Germany turned into oblivion.
Hoobastank Knows The Reason
Nobody’s perfect. But everybody should have a reason why they do what they do. The chorus of Hoobastank’s The Reason implies that one would need a reason to start over new and to change who one used to be.
I’ve found a reason for me
To change who I used to be
A reason to start over new
And the reason is you
In their story, the reason is a person.
But in your story, the reason can be anything you want.
The point is to have a reason — to have your WHY — to make change happen. That way you’d stick to it better and longer and perhaps turn it into something normal in your life that you wouldn’t have to think twice about.
My reason for going vegan was to not be a part of the cruelty to animals in factory farms and everywhere else. My secondary reason is to reduce my carbon footprint and not be a part of polluting the planet. With such strong values to uphold, I put in place the necessary habits to make it work. I started cooking plant-based meals every day and have continued until the present day and hopefully the future as well. It has been more than six years.
Because I know my WHY, I’m able to change an old habit, create a new one, and turn it into a lifestyle.
Know Your Why For Lifestyle Change To Stick
Once you’ve identified what is it that you want to change or make a habit in your life, you have to take the step to understand your reason for doing it. It sounds simple but you’d be surprised at how some people, even ourselves, may do certain things without knowing why. Or perhaps in some cases, you’ve found a piece of new information but feel it’s difficult to make a change due to your present habits. This is when knowing your why is necessary. Admit to yourself that what you’ve been doing may not be what you want to continue doing. After finding out your why, trust that the how will come.