Learning New Movement Habits – Part Two
Part Two: Consciously Exploring New Pathways
Exploring thinking and moving patterns
It takes on average 66 days for a new way of thinking, feeling or doing to form as a new habit. Of course people are varied, some can cultivate deeply grained new habits in 18 days, while the other end of the spectrum is over 200 days for new habits to be formed. This time (let’s just go with the average of 66 days) is when your old patterns and habits are still dominant. It is super easy to return to the auto pilot of moving.
Based on your external objective feedback (from a teacher or your own self discovery) this phase of learning is when you need to apply conscious effort to be in the ‘new learning’ territory.
Many people find this a challenge as it can be unfamiliar, weird, unnatural. These types of experiences and comments are common when you are consciously exploring new pathways. We encourage you to have a buddy or some type of support system to keep you engaged in this unfamiliar territory, it can really help!
For moving habits – like less tension in how you sit, or more length in your spine, these goals respond very well to support. Working with a teacher to gain weekly feedback and refinement or joining a group helps you stick with the conscious process of learning new habits.
The great news is that there is no specific formula about how much you need to ‘practice’…. Every mindful moment of conscious practice contributes to establishing new habits.
“The secret to success is being curious and playful with your exploring. Focus on the techniques and ideas rather than the outcome. It is your ‘deliberate practice’ that creates new neural pathways.”
Today’s practical task:
Set up a simple reminder system for you to activate your conscious process. Choosing a simple marker for your practice works very well, for example:
- Each time you start the car
- Each time you put the kettle on for a cup of tea
- Placing post-it notes around your common areas
- Put reminders into your phone
Here are three apps that are FREE and will help as prompts for you new habits:
- Good Habit Maker (Greg has used this one and says it a very simple but effective app!)
- Habit Coach
- Habit Builder
Be mindful in your movements and be willing and ready to take on the prompts and support available to you. Your regular habits are still dominant making it all to easy to slip back into auto pilot.
Stay tuned for part 3 – New Normal Emerges