11 Self-Improvement Habits for Becoming Your Best Self

  • Post last modified:January 27, 2023
  • Post category:Articles
Self-improvement poster: Journey of a thousand miles poster

Everyone has something they want to improve in their life.

Perhaps you want to change your bad habits, be more active, learn new stuff, or improve your relationships.

Whatever it is, you can always learn new self-improvement habits.

Self-improvement habits help you improve yourself every day and move you toward your goals and dreams. This post discusses 11 habits for daily improvement.

Table of Contents

Read More Books

There are books on almost everything. So, reading books more often helps you explore your current interests and find new ones. 

You can pick up new skills and ideas from reading self-improvement and personal growth books.

Self-improvement books can help you increase your confidence and gain control of your life. 

Also, reading novels helps you sleep better and reduces your stress levels. 1

So, whatever your interests, make time to read regularly. 

 

Meditate

This is one of the most important but neglected self-improvement habits. 

Meditation is a great way to slow things down in today’s fast-paced world. 

Even just five minutes of meditation a day can improve your mental health and personal growth. 

In fact, a recent Cambridge study shows that meditation helps relieve anxiety, depression, and pain, especially during hard times. 2

You’ll also be more aware of your thought patterns and learn more about yourself as you meditate. 

Additionally, it’s a great way to boost self-awareness and identify the bad habits that negatively impact your life.

 

Eat Healthy 

The food you eat significantly influences your mood. 

Eating junk food makes us fat, mentally slow, and less motivated. 3 

Whereas eating healthy boosts our energy and helps us live longer. 4

Start by being mindful of what you put inside your body. Living your best life is easier when you feel energized and healthy. 

So prioritize eating a balanced diet and taking in more natural and healthy foods like fruits. 

And if you don’t have time to cook healthy meals, search for healthy alternatives, such as meal kit subscriptions.

 

Keep a Journal

Keeping a journal can help you attain your goals and follow your routines. It can also be an excellent new hobby. 

You can use journals to write about things you care about or are grateful for, or even practice ways to be aware of your thoughts. 

Plus, research has shown that journaling improves our well-being and minimizes mental distress. 5

Simply jotting down your thoughts on paper improves creativity and your general health. 

And once you begin writing things down in your journal, try not to censor yourself. 

Instead, write anything that comes to mind freely without bothering about grammar and correctness. This self-improvement habit is an excellent way to unburden your mind and relieve stress.

 

Exercise More

While nutrition can influence how we feel, exercise also plays a huge role.

Regular exercise can strengthen your heart, improve your blood circulation, tone your muscles, and enhance your flexibility. 6 

Also, exercise can help you live longer and increase your energy levels.  7 

Plus there are plenty of ways you can add movement to your life and exercise more, like running, jogging, swimming, dancing, and walking.

For example, you can try a new sport and even invite a friend and spend more time together as you exercise. 

But if you don’t want to try a new sport or hit the gym, you can always choose an alternative, like going for daily walks. 

You can also start your own exercise routine at home. 

With several free workout routines online, you can always try something new if you get bored with your normal routine.

And more importantly, the best way to stay active is to pick a physical activity you enjoy doing.

 

Write Down Your Goals

If you want to improve yourself, you should set some goals. 

Writing down your goals helps you:

  • get clear on what you want,
  • stay motivated,
  • narrow your focus,
  • set realistic time frames to work towards, and
  • celebrate your progress. 8

When you create a list of goals, you can track your progress and adjust your plans over time. 

This is also one aspect you can journal about. 

For instance, you can set a goal to exercise daily for 15 minutes. 

Then after every couple of weeks, you can review your progress and tweak your exercise type and duration till you find a routine that works for you.

 

Accept Your Failures

Fear of failure can stop you from achieving your goals and hinder your self-development process. 

To improve yourself, you must face your fears, even when venturing into tough terrains. 

You can start by facing the small things and work your way up to face your bigger fears. 

For instance, if you have a fear of speaking in public, you can practice privately with friends or family.

Then over time, you can conquer your fear by practicing in front of a larger audience. 

Every time you speak to new people, you’ll be a step closer to conquering your fear of failure. 

But keep in mind that failure is a natural part of our life and it’s inevitable, and that’s okay. 

Accept your failures and see them as tools that inform you of what’s not working, so you can change strategies on your way to achieving your goals.

 

Take a Break 

Breaks are a crucial part of self-improvement. 

In the workplace, taking breaks helps you:

  • increase your productivity and creativity,
  • improve your mental health and well-being,
  • restore your focus and attention, and
  • increase job satisfaction. 9

In life, taking breaks and resting well helps you:

  • improve your memory,
  • boost your energy,
  • reduce stress, and
  • improve your overall health. 10

So schedule breaks into your workday and prioritize getting enough sleep 11 regularly. 

These breaks can be any activity that allows your mind to relax, like taking a walk or meditating. 

 

Create a Balance 

Struggling in one area of your life can significantly affect other areas of your life.

For instance, if you have issues in your relationship, then your financial and physical health could be at risk if you focus solely on that one area. 

So it’s important to service all areas of your life equally.

You can do this by dividing your life into different areas (e.g., work, personal life, community, finances) and creating goals for each area.

This will help you identify when one area is being neglected and take steps to rectify that.

Creating a balance will help you live a much happier and more successful life.  

 

Celebrate the Small Wins

Life can be hard sometimes! 

Most people never notice the hard work it took to reach their goal, so they neglect the small wins and only focus on the end goal. 

So make time to celebrate the small wins and appreciate them daily. 

This will help you to track your progress, stay motivated, and encourage self-love. 

You can reward yourself once in a while or give yourself a day off to celebrate your wins and enhance your growth.

 

Raise Your Standards

High achievers dream big and set high standards for themselves.

They also view failure as an opportunity for growth, take 100% responsibility for their own lives, are lifelong learners, and are willing to take risks and step out of their comfort zones. 12

So the first step toward becoming a high achiever is to set a high standard for yourself and adapt and make changes as you work to improve yourself. 

Indeed, deciding to improve yourself will be the best decision you ever make.

Further Reading:

Footnotes

  1. The New Yorker, Can Reading Make You Happier?
  2. C. Behan, The benefits of meditation and mindfulness practices during times of crisis such as COVID-19
  3. UCLA, Does a junk food diet make you lazy? UCLA psychology study offers answer
  4. WebMD, Eat to Boost Your Energy 
  5. Joshua M Smyth et al., Online Positive Affect Journaling in the Improvement of Mental Distress and Well-Being in General Medical Patients With Elevated Anxiety Symptoms: A Preliminary Randomized Controlled Trial
  6. Healthline, The Top 10 Benefits of Regular Exercise
  7. Healthline, The Top 10 Benefits of Regular Exercise
  8. Thrive, The Power of Writing Down Your Goals, And How To Do It
  9. Michigan State University, Breaks During the Workday
  10. UCL, 5 benefits of taking breaks
  11. Adults need 7–9 of sleep; teens, children, and babies need even more sleep for healthy growth and development (National Sleep Foundation guidelines)
  12. Nguyen, P. (2022). The 4 mindsets that separate high-achievers from the mediocre. Medium. Retrieved from https://medium.com/on-breaking-the-mold/the-4-mindsets-that-separate-high-achievers-from-the-mediocre-fb83935320c5

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