4 Brilliant Ways to Make a Habit Actually Stick

Hey, friends! I know habits have been talked about for ages, but I can promise you they haven’t been discussed like this before. I chatted with my dear friend, Monica Packer, which you may know as the expert on progress or sticky habits. And she shared her 4 brilliant ways to make a habit actually stick. Now, you may or may not know this already, but the secret to business or even in life comes from the habits you keep for yourself. So, this post is a good one! Let’s get started.



Monica is a podcaster and coach on progress. And the whole habit side of her content was totally accidental. She said it all had to do with why she chose to focus on progress over perfection. For such a long time Monica thought it had to be all or nothing and going for the “all” every time led to a ton of burnout and fear in trying again.

To get out of that rut, she performed a years-long experiment that encouraged her to focus on her progress over perfection. From this experiment, she figured out that everything we do really comes down to two things. And those are identity–knowing who we are and what matters to us–and habits–how we actually live that out. 

I know many of you biz mamas are ambitious and have all of these goals you want to achieve, but you don’t do the work to get there because there’s just not enough time, right? Time is usually the common denominator when it comes to not doing the things we want to do. But if you want time, a large part of that is having some supportive routines in your life that make that time possible for you to do the work you know you can do. 


4 brilliant ways to make a habit actually stick. www.iammichellegifford.com


4 Brilliant Ways to Make a Habit Actually Stick

There are a lot of experts or gurus out there who tell you how to create those supportive routines and habits, but they’re not meant for us. They’re meant for probably men or people who have time to work a full-time job every day with minimal interruption. They don’t have teenagers, or a toddler running around, or having to play taxi driver in the midst of growing a business. 

So because we are so unique as business moms, we need to approach habits differently than how it’s been traditionally taught. The first thing we need to realize is that habits are here to make our lives better. They are not here because someone told us we should be doing it.


Way #1 to Make a Habit Actually Stick: Habits should be supportive.

Women and mothers stay on the “should” train for way too long. You think of all the things you should be doing and then you start to feel shame when you’re not doing those things. So the only should you are allowed to keep in your head space is, “Habits should be supportive.”

Habits are here to serve you in the season of life you are in right now. They are not meant to be a ball and chain. They are here to lift you up into the next version of yourself, not beat you down for who you are not ready to be. 

So, when creating your habits, ask yourself, how will this support me? There’s no need to start habits you’re not ready for. If you feel pressured to start some habits, let it go and think about what’s best for you, not what you should be doing.


the key to making a habit actually stick. www.iammichellegifford.com


Way #2 to Make a Habit Actually Stick: Create a smaller version of your habits.

Most habit practices we read about in a book come with one common problem. The habit tricks taught are meant for ideal, predictable days. And those types of days are rare for us biz moms. Maybe you’ve heard to implement a new habit for x amount of days and then it will stick, right? But the nature of this exercise doesn’t take into account when unexpected things pop up. E.g. having sick kids at home, navigating kids’ sports schedules, etc. 

So, when you create your habit, think of one that will support you even on your worst or most inconvenient days. Setting it up this way will allow you to create habits that stick even without having the predictability of what your days will look like. 

And what I mean by creating a smaller version of your habit is taking baby steps toward what you want your actual habit to be. For example, if you want to start waking up at 6:30 but right now you wake up at 7:30, don’t jump straight to 6:30. Start with waking up just 5 minutes earlier than 7:30. 

Did you laugh at that example? Good! When your habits seem laughably small, you are doing it right. You want to make the smallest version of your habit first because you are going to build it from there.


Way #3 to Make a Habit Actually Stick: Make your habit simple. 

Maybe you want to work on your morning routine. And this routine has 10 steps in it, none of which you are doing right now. This is a great goal to have and you can get there pretty quickly. But you are not going to get there quickly if you try to implement all 10 things at the same time. 

So, let’s continue with the example we used earlier with the mom who wants to start waking up at 6:30. Let’s say she wants to wake up earlier so she can go running for a half hour. Her first step to meeting this goal may look like waking up 5 minutes earlier and doing a quick exercise.

Again, you want this simplicity to be laughable. Though it may not seem like you’re hardly trying, you are creating a consistency that is almost perfect. And once that consistency is in place you’ll be able to build your habits so much more easily from it. 


how to make new habits work for you rather than you work for them. www.iammichellegifford.com


Way #4 to Make a Habit Actually Stick: Make your habit specific.

Sometimes we fall into the trap of equating habit with routine. A routine is much more complex with multiple steps. A habit is a small, simple, and specific piece of that routine. So, referring back to our example, if you want to wake up earlier, you need to get really specific about what this looks like.

How do you wake up? Is it with an alarm or a kid in your face? Have an intention of how the habit will play out. This could look like, “When my alarm goes off, then I’ll get up and do my 10 jumping jacks.” You want to get really clear on what this habit will actually look like when you start implementing it every day.


knowing who you are changes how you show up for yourself. www.iammichellegifford.com


4 Brilliant Ways to Make a Habit Actually Stick

Alright, my friends, those are the 4 brilliant ways to make a habit actually stick. If you want to learn more Monica has a free class for women you can take part in! It’s the #1 Reason Why Women Must Do Habits Differently. Sign up for it HERE. You can also find her on Instagram @aboutprogress

P.S. Have you signed up for my Business Mom School yet? It’s my FREE program where I teach you all the ins and outs of starting and growing a successful business. Everything from how to use the best business tools to managing that business mom schedule. Click HERE to join!

4 Brilliant Ways to Make a Habit Actually Stick

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