We all have habits that we wish we could build into our day-to-day lives. Whether you want to establish a habit of healthy exercise, excellent productivity at work, responsible personal finances, or something else entirely, our habits can change our lives. But forming a new habit can seem like a daunting undertaking. But don’t worry — you don’t have to tackle new habits all at once! Establishing a smaller “keystone habit” can make it easier to build larger habits.
What is a Keystone Habit?
The phrase “keystone habit” refers to one small habit that acts as support for the other habits that make up a larger lifestyle change. By establishing that one achievable habit, you trigger a chain of related positive habits.
For example, if you want to work on a healthier lifestyle, it may sound insurmountable to start exercising regularly, change your diet, kick unhealthy patterns, and more. But choosing a keystone habit, like taking a thirty minute walk every day, can be much more attainable. Once you’ve established that smaller habit, you get a sense of accomplishment that makes larger habits feel easier to tackle.
How to Create a Keystone Habit
The first step is choosing a keystone habit that will create a ripple effect of other habits you want to establish. Trying to be more productive at work? Maybe your keystone habit will be writing a to-do list every day, or tackling your biggest task first each morning.
Once you’ve selected your keystone habit, it’s time to tackle the process of working it into your life. Creating a habit takes work, but if you can dedicate yourself to your keystone habit, you’ll have a solid start towards making a larger change. Studies show that it takes about 66 days to form a habit, so if you can stick with your keystone habit for about two months, it’ll start to feel like second nature.
Anything is achievable if you just take it one step at a time. A keystone habit is the small first step towards a larger goal. Tackle that, and you’ll be ready to tackle anything!