How Habits are Formed in the Brain

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Yaki' the zombie thinking about brains.

Habits have a significant impact on our lives, whether good or bad. To better understand how to improve our lives, it is crucial to know how habits are formed in the brain. It’s a lot like Okl’n when he had trouble making guitar playing a habit.

Habits Are Not Formed at Once

Habits are born through repetitive actions. When you perform a task over and over, it eventually becomes a part of your daily routine and gradually becomes a habit. The challenging part is that any habit you opt for becomes wearisome after a while. 

A new task can be challenging to make a part of your routine and adding it entirely to your schedule can exhaust you. To make it enjoyable, you can begin by breaking it into small pieces and building it up gradually.

It Takes Time to Make a Habit

Humans and zombies share many common characteristics. In the same way that humans are curious and eager to learn new things, zombies exhibit the same traits. 

Okl’n was intrigued when he saw Yaki’ playing the guitar. This sparked his curiosity, so he immediately began to learn the instrument. In his excitement, he planned to play guitar every day for an hour, not realizing that it would be incredibly tiring and painful for him.

He played the guitar for a complete hour on the very first day. By the end of the day, his fingers were blistered and screaming from working on the frets.

You can’t make a healthy routine in a day or two – Okl’n didn’t realize that. Ignoring his blistered fingers, he played the guitar for an hour on the second day. By the third day, Okl’n was screaming in pain and thinking he wouldn’t be able to play the guitar.

Baby Steps Lead to Habits

There are indeed certain things that we’re passionate about. However, when we start working without any planning, that passion can run out fast.

The same happened with Okl’n. Despite being passionate about learning guitar, the daily effort of playing too long destroyed his passion.

After that, Okl’n’s mind wandered back to when he began running. How he ran for 30 minutes on the first day and was so sore the next day that he didn’t go running again.

Solutions lie within problems, and Okl’n found one!

Keep it Short but Consistent

Okl’n recalled that he eventually did start running, but he took a different approach. As an out-of-shape zombie, he didn’t run 30 minutes every day. Instead, he walked a minute every day.

After a week, he increased it to three minutes. A week later, he was walking 5 minutes a day, and after a month, he started jogging. After six weeks of struggle, he was confident enough to begin running.

After Okl’n realized his mistake, he fixed it, and eventually, he succeeded in running. He became a runner after discovering how habits are formed inside the brain. 

How Habits are Formed Inside Our Brains

Okl’n decided to do the same thing with guitar – He just picked it up each day and named the strings as he plucked each one and put it down. Having practiced for a week, he began to play 3 minutes a day of random notes. 

It was only a matter of time before he started playing a simple song again. Currently, he plays some wonderful songs that he enjoys.

If you want to make it achievable for yourself, here’s what you can do:

  • Streamline the Process – Make the process so simple that you cannot resist doing it.
  • Build Momentum – Do the action every day, expanding your efforts every few weeks until you reach your goal.
  • Make the Task Fun – Make the task fun by offering rewards, playing music, or adding other items.

Are You Ready to Get More Brain Hacks?

Simple tasks and habits become tiresome when our brain fails to accept them. If you’re someone who wants to achieve your life goals with consistency, you must know how habits are formed inside your brain.

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