There’s no shortage of books about how to positively change your behavior. Lucky for you, I’ve read many of these books and think about habits as part of behavior change for my job daily. The science of behavior change is much more than changing one small thing in your life, but one way to change behavior is to impact habits and make change easier for people. It’s important to consider barriers to habit change, and to fully understand what it really takes to change your behavior.
You’ll find conflicting research about how long it really takes to change habits. Some say 28 days, others much longer. Recent studies say it actually depends on the habit. If something is an easier change to your life, it may take less time to adopt it. If it’s a full-scale change to how you’ve lived your life, give yourself some grace and don’t give up if it takes more time. One of the greatest takeaways in the books referenced below is that dedication in the process to change is potentially even more important than the change itself.