How do we break our bad habits and form good ones?
Summer is well and truly here and it’s a good time for students to be building momentum for the new academic year. For all of us working, it’s a good time to refelct on how we might better manage our time so we can enjoy those precious moments of time out. Let’s face it when we’ve been in education or work life for years it’s easy to assume we’ve formed some habits that would be better off booted out of our regimes. Good habits can help us be more productive, prioritise our do-to lists and remember our important tasks. You can feel satisfied too by tracking your progress through small, manageable goal posts.
Kicking bad habits or establishing new ones is not a piece of cake, but we believe you can make these changes. Plus it can be fun with the help of some handy apps.
It can take between 2 weeks to 2 months to form new life habits
According to research by brainingpickings.org, it can take 66 days to form a habit. If you can commit to something as easy as drinking a glass of water after breakfast this habit could form in as little as 21 days. If we can make these small changes over a period of time it's more likely that we'll be able to stick with these traits well, forever. Imagine how much more we could achieve!
We set our experts on the case to track down the right apps that may well help you make these positive changes and keep you motivated.
- HabitBull: (Free – iOS and Android) is described as ‘perfect for people who have flexible habit-building goals’such as walking to work or university three times a week instead of everyday. The app doesn't limit you to one daily reminder and you can customise alerts for certain days and times of the week. The app allows you to track your habits with a number so if, for example, the desired habit is to take a break and think for 15 minutes every day, you can just enter "10 minutes" when that is completed and you’ll still feel like you're working towards your goals. You really can visualise your habits in a variety of ways, track streaks, look at a calendar, and even discuss habits with other users. You may need some patience to learn the interface quirks but, HabitBull is a great app with a lot of data available for you.
- LifeTracker: (Android and web app) Achieving goals can be simple, it’s down to knowing when to do the right things at the right time. LifeTracker is built to know when to remind you about them. Get reminders about your most important activities when the time and place is right. Achieve more, remember important purchases, stay foucsed on your goals and feel a sense of achievement everyday.
- Google Goals: (web app) Trying google goals for a few weeks can lead to some positive small changes that can really benefit all of us. Some people have reported being better hydrated, being able to meditate more frequently and achieving better sleep. But how does it work?
- Open the Google Calendar app
- In the bottom right, tap Create
- Tap Goal
- Choose a category, for instance Family & friends or Exercise
- Follow the directions on your screen to set up your goal such as ‘take a break’
- Tap Done
- Sessions will be automatically added to your calendar, starting with the first four weeks
AbilityNet is a UK charity that helps provide information on technology and disability, if you’d like to know how technology may benefit you, you can call us on 0800 269 545 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.