October 17, 2021

Helping New Habits Stick

After waiting for the 7 Steps to BALM Retreat to start for 3 months, it came and passed almost in an instant!

Fortunately though, participants reported it to be a rich and fulfilling instant to say the least! Many of us left with new insights, skills, and tools, along with determination to put them into practice.

How, though, do you leave a retreat, continue a change process, and sustain it without losing motivation? That is the question.

During inhouse coaching supervision this morning, one of our coaches shared her own plan for continuing to implement her new habits of mind, speech, and action over the coming year. Building on the Calendar Activity in our book BALM: The Loving Path to Family Recovery, Coach Marissa plans to put the question “How are things now?” into her calendar at the 3, 6, 9, and 12 month marks. Instead of focusing on how her loved one is, she is going to focus on how she is doing with sticking to her newly developed habits.

This idea, of using the calendar to mark not only time, but also progress, can make a difference when it comes to keeping ourselves accountable.

For instance, let’s say your commitment is to deepen your inner peace through a daily practice of meditation. You have decided to do so for 30 minutes each day, a new habit for you. You put an x on each day in the calendar. After 3 months have passed, you will find the question HOW ARE THINGS NOW on your calendar. You go back 90 days and count the number of days you followed through on your commitment and note it; for instance, 60 days of 90 days would be a simple 60/90.

Every thirty days you check again.

To enhance your use of this tool, you could also jot down how your life is changing as a result of your meditation. Note things like:
- How your way of thinking is shifting
- If you find yourself able to watch your thoughts, words, and behaviors, even if they are not yet changing
- Changes in how you are thinking, feeling, talking, and behaving
- Changes in your relationships with your loved one, other family members, or whomever you are relating to as you develop these new habits
- Any changes you see in others in your life as you change

It is said that when one person changes, everyone around them begins to change. Watch yourself as you shift and evolve your habits and observe how the world around you begins to change as well.

Each of your loved ones and family members is on a journey. You have a role in loving them with all of your wisdom, helping not enabling, and nurturing a life of your own that becomes a model of solid, healthy, loving, connected recovery for them to model their own lives after.

The BALM Program has a reputation for creating inner shifts in family members that make space for everyone in the family to become more authentic and, often, healthier. If you would like to learn more about how to engage more authentically with yourself, those you love, and even those you hardly know, check us out at bealovingmirror.com or call our outreach representative at 1-888-998-2256 ext 5.

About the author

Beverly Buncher, MA, PCC, CBFRLC, CTPC, known as the "Foremost Family Recovery Life Coach in the Nation", is the Founder and CEO of Family Recovery Resources, LLC, and the BALM® (Be A Loving Mirror®) Institutes for Family Recovery Coach Training and Family Recovery Education.