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There is a popular saying that your thoughts become your words; your words become your actions; your actions become your habits, and as time goes on, your habits become your character. This is why it is essential to cultivate positive habits so that we can exhibit good characters that will impact the people around us and our community in a good way.

Habits are a daily part of our lives. That is why you will never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret to being successful is found in our daily routine, and as such, we need to ensure that the actions we take daily end up being habits that affect us positively.

Working on yourself daily, being conscious of your actions and making small improvements regularly may be better and more effective than trying to make a lot of big changes at once, thereby pushing yourself far too much.

Daily self-improvement is all about your motivations and goals, what you have set out to achieve for yourself, and if not, what you need to be the best version of yourself.

Here are 10 daily habits that you need to cultivate to develop yourself positively.

1. Develop a Consistent Morning Routine

2. Drink water when you wake up

3. Ensure to take your breakfast

4. Learn to exercise daily

5. Read daily

6. Quit bad habits

7. Avoid negative people

8. Connect with your friends or loved ones

9. Revisit your goals

10. Develop a consistent bedtime routine

Let’s get started!

A young woman stretching after waking up.
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1.   Develop a Consistent Morning Routine

What do you do when you wake up in the morning? Ask yourself that very important question. It is said that what you do in the morning determines how your entire day goes. That is why having a consistent morning routine that works for you and spurs you to go into the day shining like a star is necessary.

You should know that the key to having a productive day is “breaking down every task into small steps, then scheduling everything by starting from the end of the day and working backward”. This means that you know exactly what activity you’ll do from the moment you wake up.

This activity has helped me a lot as a person. That doesn’t mean I have perfected it. However, I am still learning it and becoming better at it. It may be a bit overwhelming at first, but remember that Rome was not built in a day, and you cannot perfect the routine at once. It will also help you manage time, so you have to be committed to the routine.

A pigeon drinking water from an open tap.
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2.   Drink water when you wake up

I know, I know, you ask yourself what does this have to do with me developing yourself. It has everything to do with it. You need food and water to get by every day and have enough energy for the day ahead.

Did you know that recent studies have shown a link between weight loss, mental clarity, and hydration levels when we drink water first thing in the morning? Yes, drinking water at any time of the day is also important and beneficial to us; but you need to try to make it a habit of drinking water first thing in the morning and then take time to notice how it makes you feel.

A healthy and complete breakfast.
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3.   Ensure to take your breakfast

I cannot emphasize how important food is for the body. I believe we all know it as well. And the first meal of the day is the most important meal of the day. You need the right amount of energy for the day’s work.

Having breakfast every morning doesn’t need to look like a grand feast or a meal at a five-star restaurant. It can be something simple and light, but you need to fill your stomach and ensure that you are satisfied to take on the day.

A woman jogging through a foggy morning sky.
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4.   Learn to exercise daily

That’s true. Develop a consistent workout routine. Listen, I am not a big fan of exercise, but I have seen over time how it has benefitted people around me.

The thing is, most of us tend to spend the majority of our days sitting, especially those of us who work in 9 to 5 jobs or office jobs. We need to be truthful to ourselves. Our bodies were not made to be sedentary all day, so it is important for your overall health that you get up and ensure to move once in a while.

Wherever you are, you can do little exercises that will be good for your body. You can exercise before you go out in the morning, making it a part of your morning routine. Or you can walk around during your break at work or just do something that helps your muscles.

And so, find the exercise that’s best for you, and stick to it. You should know that regular exercise contributes to a long and healthy life. If you are having problems with it, then you can be accountable to a friend of yours or organize a workout routine with some of your friends so you can feel more encouraged to work out together.

Starting with some simple routines is a great way to get into the habit of daily exercise.

A woman with a metal ring reading a book.
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5.   Read daily

We learn new things daily, and what better way than in the pages of a book? Or your phone? The end of the matter is that you should read, read and keep reading.

Make it a habit to read something every day, whether it’s an article online or in a newspaper, a book, a magazine and so on. Reading gives us knowledge, stimulates creativity, and acts as a proper workout for our brain just like exercise is for the body.

When you cultivate a good reading habit, it will help you reduce your daily stress, improve your memory, and even make you more creative. Reading exposes you to a lot of things and causes you to be more aware of your daily activities. It also serves as a good pastime that helps you relax and get better sleep.

A woman showing an apple and a partially eaten doughnut.
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6.   Quit bad habits

Robert Collier once said that success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out. You cannot claim to learn and cultivate new positive habits if you do not let go of the old bad habits.

Like the Bible says, old things are passed away; behold, all things become new. We need to learn to quit bad habits if we want to make good habits become a part of us.

We do this by our daily actions. And the only way for us to successfully imbibe positive habits that will help us develop ourselves and become better persons is when we make efforts to quit our bad habits once at a time.

I know they say that it is easier to prevent bad habits than to break them, but it is easier to prevent the bad habit of not letting go of your old habits than to make excuses for them and continue for them. It looks confusing, right? It isn’t actually. Just discipline yourself and be committed to developing yourself by quitting your bad habits.

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7.   Avoid negative people

The popular Afrobeat song ‘Bad Energy’ by Wizkid and Skepta advised us to keep bad energy far away from us. The reason is that negative people bring bad energy and can spoil your entire mood for the whole day.

Negative people tend to bring you down and cause you to be unproductive for the day. Whether it is that neighbour, colleague from work, a client or even a friend, no one has the right to spoil your day for you.

And if there’s the need for you to let go of some people who have your past and present unbearable, you should let go of them to make your future better for you. You cannot be happy or develop yourself if you surround yourself with negative people.

They will always be the stumbling block to your success. The ones that drag you down and prevent you from moving forward. So, my friend, no need for bad vibes and bad energy. Free yourself. You have a right to be happy every day. Learn to surround yourself with beautiful people.

A group of girl friends laughing together.
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8.   Connect with your friends or loved ones

Every day of our lives, we need to understand that we will not be where we are if not for our loved ones and friends that have been a strong supporting system for us. I know it is not all friends or family members that do this, but we should be grateful for the ones that go out of their way to do things for us.

That’s why we should connect with them more. Daily, check up on that friend, family member, neighbour, colleague or even that man or woman across the street. It can be an old friend that you haven’t spoken to in a while or a co-worker that you haven’t had the time to connect with. It would mean a lot to them. Not only because they will feel loved, but it helps them know that you are doing well and are safe.

Making this a daily routine is good for our mental health. You are rest assured that your friends and loved ones are okay. You may also learn new ideas from them that will benefit you or talk to them about something that has been bothering you and indirectly affecting your daily life.

Goals written on post-it notes on the wall.
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9.   Revisit your goals

Many of us are guilty of setting new year’s resolutions and promising ourselves that we are going to abide by them faithfully. We go as far as writing it in all our books or pasting them on the wall. I am not saying it is bad. It is, in fact, great, but how many of us follow it through?

That is why you need to revisit those goals you set for yourself and work towards achieving them daily. It doesn’t have to be a big step, or you don’t have to affect a major change before you are sure that you have started taking steps to achieve your goals.

You can make small efforts daily and measure your progress. If you need to learn new skills to achieve that goal, then learn them. No knowledge is ever lost, and we never stop learning, do we? Don’t forget to treat yourself or appreciate yourself when that small effort you make results in you taking one step to achieving that goal. We are rooting for you all the way.

A bed with pillows, a book, and a pair of eyeglasses.
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10.  Develop a consistent bedtime routine

Now the day is over, the sun has set, and the stars have come out in the sky. You have either had a stressful day or a restful day, whether at work or school. It could be a good day or a bad day. But you are back home now and about to end what may have been a long day.

However, a happy and healthy morning starts with a restful and consistent bedtime routine. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but it is important to make or have one and try to stick to it.

Having a consistent bedtime routine makes things easier for you when you arrive home after a day out. It helps you to settle in faster and prepare well for the following day.

For example, when I come back from my busy day, I try to rest for a little while before I do anything. At times, I have my bath before or after I rest. When I am fully refreshed, I sometimes make my dinner with my family or friends.

This helps me relax a lot, and after eating, I gist with my family or friends or try to finish up any work I have before the next day. Then before I go to bed, I prepare for the next day and ensure that I have everything set to make my morning and day easier.

Your routine doesn’t have to be like mine, but it should be something that works for you and makes your night and day easier and less stressed.

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Conclusively, these habits may look difficult, but they are not. Like someone said, depending on what they are, our habits will either make or break us. We become what we repeatedly do, and as we all know, practice makes perfect.

Know that replacing just a few key negative habits with a few positive habits can easily be the difference between being mostly unhappy and mostly happy. In order words, to develop yourself, learn these daily habits and let us know how it has impacted you positively.

Please feel free to share some of your personal experiences and thoughts in the comments section below!

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