Do you have a habit that keeps slipping that you really want to instill? After reading the book Atomic Habits by James Clear, I realized that instilling new habits is way more complicated than I initially assumed. There’s a whole range of psychology involved, for starters - our mental, spiritual, emotional health in everything that we do and how we act.

For me, I’ve learned I do well with visuals and trackers. And habit stacking. Always habit stacking. That’s actually two suggested strategies to help instill habits better in the book Atomic Habits. Today, I’m sharing about how to make a plan to take back your habits or instill new ones.

How to make a plan to take back your habits or instill new ones

Nothing is done or completed without a good plan first for most things…so that’s really the first thing to do when making a plan to take back your habits. I enjoyed the book Atomic Habits as James Clear gives lots of practical tips for creating a plan to make habits (more likely) to stick. You also can’t make a plan without knowing what to do, so I’ll be sharing seven key suggestions from Atomic Habits by James Clear that will help habits stick much better below:

  1. Make a plan, as mentioned.
  2. Write it down. Writing things down will help commit the plan better to memory and the habits will become not as easily forgotten.
  3. Make it obvious. Making a habit obvious will help it to stick. An example would be to leave a glass of water in your bathroom to remind you to drink (my actual way of getting myself to drink more water ha!).
  4. Try habit stacking. When forming new routines, stick it onto an already established habit or routine and it’ll have a more likely chance of sticking. See my blog here on habit stacking.
  5. Use visual cues. This can be anything from using a habit tracker to leaving your glass of water by the sink, as mentioned.
  6. Make your habit appealing. It’s much easier to start and continue a habit if it’s intentionally made to be more appealing. I think this is where some creativity comes in play too. An example for me would be my winding down for bedtime routine. I used to really, really not enjoy my routine. I’d dread it, in fact. I used to drag my feet starting it and getting through it. Since adding in candles instead of bright, stark bathroom lights while I get ready and popping on an audiobook or podcast, this habit (routine) has become MUCH more appealing to me and it’s something I look forward to every day. I don’t often dread or skip this bedtime routine now.
  7. Start small and go from there. I’m a big fan of starting small, but some research also affirms that small, consistent steps are also the way to go for most anything. The reason behind this is because most often, big steps = burnout much faster. Small steps a bit at a time tend to be more sustainable long term.

A pink marker checking off a to do list.


Want to work on a new habit? Try using a habit tracker. It can be an effective, simple strategy to help instill new habits. You can grab that free habit tracker HERE.

Taking back your habits or instilling new habits can be difficult, but with a well-laid plan, it can become much easier for you to instill those new habits. I highly recommend reading through James Clear’s book on habits too. It was very insightful! You can find it in my Amazon shops under “Books that have made an impact”: US shop or Canadian shop.

A picture of my printable habit tracker.

Other blogs of mine you may enjoy:

7 Tips for Making New Routines Stick

How to Make Habits Stick without Much Effort

10 Simple Habits to Create a Simpler Home

Hi, I’m Kelly! I’m a mother of four children - three boys, one toddler girl - and our family lives on the beautiful east coast of Canada. I’m a past elementary teacher, turned stay at home, work at home mom eight years ago after I had my second child. I’ve found that the busier I’ve become and as my children age, that it’s become even more important to figure out what is most important to me and us as a family. Living a simpler lifestyle has helped us in so many ways in our home life - from better routines to faster tidying up times. It has been through my children that I have been inspired to learn how to effectively manage my time and to simplify in all areas of my home and life. I enjoy helping busy moms simplify home life by teaching flexible planning methods and skills. Enjoyed this blog and think it would be helpful to others? I'd love if you shared it. Thank you!