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Seven Habits to Bring out the Best in Life and Relationships, 1 of 2


images-388Do you ever wonder why success for some people seems like smooth sailing on a warm breezy day, while others work hard to stay afloat?  Success is no accident – it’s a collection of mindful, conscious habits.  A conscious habit is a choice to practice, remain aware and take action.  The seven conscious habits below can work wonders.

Habit #1. Visually Prepare to Succeed and Contribute

Imagine being who and what you aspire, such as enjoying a trim, fit, radiantly healthy body, a highly-profitable and fulfilling career, or a vibrant mutually enriching relationship with your spouse. What would you be willing to do to realize this?  Before you answer this question, however, shift the focus of your imagination to your own goals and dreams.  Close your eyes for a few seconds, and take a couple of deep breaths. Smile, and trust your inner guidance. When one thing jumps out at you, see, hear and feel yourself enjoying your success as if you already have it. See, feel and hear yourself preparing to realize what you aspire.

Then, decide what one action you’d be willing to take regularly, starting today, that would contribute to your success. Write it down. Once that’s in place, chose another action toward your goal.  With each action, you prepare for your success, whether your goal is radiant health and fitness, financial security, or creating fabulously happy, high quality relationships with those closest to you. Think of each small action you take as preparations that contribute to your life, your relationships, your future.

Finally, expand you’re your vision to seeing how this would contribute to those closest to you, your community and world. When you connect to your joy, what you love, the actions follow. It’s a formula that works. Seek to find ways to improve the quality of life around you. Clarify and regularly reflect on your vision for a fulfilling life and relationships to prepare to make life enriching contributions.

Habit #2. Mindfully Choose Life Enriching Daily Routines

You already have daily routines, but enrich or block what you most want to realize? Do they move you toward the life you desire to manifest—or away? When you pause to imagine yourself preparing to live the best life and relationships possible, as an everyday reality, pause for a moment, to realize how vital your mental and physical fitness is to achieving your success. A healthy, fit body is more than a nice goal. Taking good care of your body is perhaps one of the most important investments you can make. If you’re not enjoying a healthy body, how can you enjoy the realization of other goals?

Routines such as getting 7-8 hours restful sleep each night, enjoying regular, balanced exercise, and nourishing your body with healthy meals that include a lot of vibrantly colored vegetables, are must-have life enriching habits in preparing for a happy, fulfilling life, whereas eating toxic fatty, sugary foods, or staying up late in front of a computer or TV block optimal functioning of your physical health, as well as your mental and emotional well being.

Take a close look at your routines and see where they may need adjusting.  If you find yourself buying needless stuff, or paying late fees or interest on credit cards, it’s time to implement a new routine—that really supports your happiness. In other words, develop routines that make a difference because they emotionally support your highest goals for yourself.  Mindfully choose routines that enrich your mind and body, and make life easier, more enjoyable for you—that, in the long run—contribute to your life.

Habit #3. Focus 90% of Your Vision on Your “YES!” 

What are you saying “Yes!” to in your daily routines? What are you saying “No!” to as a regular practice? Is what you say yes or no to a conscious choice to contribute to your desire for vibrant health, an uncluttered life, or a strong, vibrant marriage? Saying “yes” when you want or need to say “no” does not does not work no matter how pure the intention “to give” or “give in” seems. To enrich your life, start by giving yourself the gift of letting go of attachments to certain outcomes, such as desire for approval or to be “nice” by not hurting others. You cannot contribute to others as long as you are not simultaneously honoring yourself, and your own inner emotional drives for balance, integrity, connection. To be your authentic self, to be real, check that your giving is judicious, that is, it comes from a place of consciously knowing you want to give solely and completely from a place of sheer joy and satisfaction.

There is a ratio of Yes-to-No to follow, by the way, for optimal results. A good rule of thumb is a 9-to-1 ratio of positivity. In other words, focus about 90% of the energy of your imagination power on what you desire and want more of in your life. This energizes inner processes that prompt you to take action steps in the direction of your dreams, thus, contributes to your life.  Remember to also say “Yes!” to truths and affirmations that acknowledge your highest potential, motivate you to action, and energize your beliefs in yourself.  Say “Yes!” to loving, accepting and valuing yourself, just as you are! Say “Yes!” to feeling confident, calm and assured you can achieve whatever you put your mind to! Say “Yes!” to stretching yourself past your limits of comfort when doing so means you contribute to your success in realizing the healthy, radiant life, body and relationships you want.

When you mindfully say YES! YES! YES! to what’s most important, saying no to what blocks success gets easy, real easy. As a result, you feel more fulfilled, energetic and in charge of your life.  And that’s what you’re looking for, isn’t it?

Habit #4. Energize Your Passion

Have you noticed how striving for perfection tends to make us procrastinate?  Strive instead to enjoy both your progress and the processes leading to the successful outcomes you produce.  Success follows naturally when most of your focus rests more on how to enjoy reaching your goals, and less on what to do to get there. Take pleasure in your creative abilities, the power you have to make choices in how you live your live, and the freedom you have to shift to optimal choices.  As for the human inclination to strive for perfection, embrace the benefits and let go of the rest.  What benefits?  Ultimately, dis-satisfaction (in being less than perfect) keeps us reaching and moving forward, maintains our momentum toward success.  The laws of the universe require continual motion, forward or back, and reserve no place for standing still to gloat.  Getting stuck in negativity, indecisiveness or inertia actually shifts to backward momentum.  Our desire to relieve dissatisfaction guarantees we continue to grow, improve, enrich our lives with our talents and skills. In essence, your passion for reaching your dreams is the only perfection you need to breakthrough obstacles to reach and enjoy the realization of each one.

Habits #5 through #7 follow in Part 2.

Seven Habits to Bring out the Best in Life and Relationships, 1 of 2

Athena Staik, Ph.D.

Relationship consultant, author, licensed marriage and family therapist, Dr. Athena Staik motivates clients to break free of anxiety, emotion reactivity, and other addictive patterns, to awaken wholehearted relating to self and other. She is currently in private practice in Northern VA, and writing her book, What a Narcissist Means When He Says 'I Love You'": Breaking Free of Addictive Love in Couple Relationships. To contact Dr. Staik for information, an appointment or workshop, visit, or visit on her two Facebook fan pages DrAthenaStaik and DrStaik

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APA Reference
Staik, A. (2013). Seven Habits to Bring out the Best in Life and Relationships, 1 of 2. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 18, 2019, from


Last updated: 18 Jun 2013
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