Throughout the year you might decide to make some changes either to lifestyle, work or unhealthy habits. In order for change to take place and become an automatic part of you life there are 6 Stages you'll go through whether or not you're conscious of them.
Pre-contemplation: Ignorance is bliss! you're unaware of the need to change and have no desire to do so.
Contemplation: Either you have decided you need some change or maybe friends of family have mentioned maybe it's time, especially if they consider what you're doing is damaging to your health, or relationships. This stage can take a while so in order not to be prevented completely from moving forward remind yourself why you want the change or the new habit and the benefits it will bring.
Preparation: Your thinking about it - reading books, talking to people you think might help or who already have the habit you want to develop. All these things will help you decide when you'll be ready to begin.
Action: You've started to make some changes although you're aware that you're having to focus to keep up the change. Keep reminding yourself about the positive feeling your new habit is giving you.
Maintenance: Your beginning to feel a lot more confident you can continue with this new regime, you're managing to deal with small relapses. This stage can be challenging and requires commitment.
Relapse: It's human nature that challenges will present themselves and from time to time you may give in to them, but be assured that once you return to your new habit it will come back faster than the first time. However, remember the 6 stages and remind yourself why you wanted the change and the benefits they brought to you.
Your ultimate goal is to make this change an automatic action, something that requires no specific thought or choice. Remember, a newly constructed wall is easily knocked down, but the longer it stands the harder it is to push over - just like your new habit.