9 Ways to Successfully Create Good Habits and 5 Reasons Why You Fail At Breaking the Bad Ones

9 Ways to Successfully Create New, Good Habits and the 5 Reasons Why You Fail At Breaking the Bad Ones

"Your net worth to the world is usually determined by what remains after your bad habits are subtracted from your good ones." – Benjamin Franklin

We all have habits. Some are good, healthy habits, while others are bad and possibly even dangerous. Throughout our lives we often set goals to try to create new, good habits or to break the bad ones we already possess. Many people try again and again to change their habits for the better only to meet with failure in the end. Learning a new habit can be just as difficult as breaking a bad one that you've struggled with for years. There are reasons for this and steps that you can take to help ensure your success.

Establishing good, healthy habits can enrich your life in countless ways. When an action becomes a habit, it becomes automatic and you don't really have to give it much thought. Some of the healthy habits that people try to develop include; eating healthier, exercising regularly, meditating, completing chores around the home, or simply taking time out daily for them-selves. These are just a few examples but, basically anything that you want to do on a regular basis that will enrich your life and make you happier can become a habit.

Here are nine, simple tips that are easy to follow and can help you to turn healthy activities into lifelong habits.

1. Take baby steps. – You cannot expect to just dive in and be successful when developing a good habit. Start with small manageable steps. If you would like to make healthy eating a habit, start by swapping out specific foods or meals for healthier options. If you make sudden, drastic changes to your lifestyle, the odds are good that you will not be successful.

2. Make yourself accountable. – Tell a friend or family member whose opinions matter to you. By telling a trusted friend or family member about your intension to develop a new habit you promote accountability. You will be more likely to stick to your habit if you know that you will have to answer to someone other than yourself.

3. Treat yourself. – You should be proud of the fact that you are trying to make positive changes in your life. Reward yourself regularly when you stick to your new habit. Treat yourself to a pedicure or a warm bubble bath. Spend a Saturday morning sleeping in, or play a few rounds of golf on the course. Whatever it is that you love … do it.

4. One habit at a time. – Work on developing one habit at a time. If you are anything like me, there are a ton of new, healthy habits that you want to incorporate into your life. Focus on one at a time so that you don't get overwhelmed. Developing a habit, like exercising regularly might seem like a small change but it's not. When you begin to develop a new habit of any kind you are changing the way that you live your life.

5. Make sure that you really want it. – The more you want to make even small changes, the more likely you will stick with them. Don't ever begin to develop a habit that you don't want just because you think, or have been told, that it's the right thing to do. If you try to force yourself to do something you hate, you will avoid it at all costs. If you hate going to the gym, don't do it. There are plenty of good habits that you can develop that will enrich your life and that you will enjoy.

6. Plan it out.- Sit down and make a list of the good habits you would like to develop. Prioritize the list and determine what habits you would like to develop first. Once you have this figured out, write out a plan. By putting this in writing you can refer back to it whenever you need a bit of extra motivation and it will help you stay on track.

7. Be very specific. – Don't just say, "I want to make it a habit to drink more water". Instead, say, "I want to begin drinking eight glasses of water each day". By being specific you know exactly what you have to do to develop your new habit and will not become overwhelmed. If you are too vague, you could easily rationalize that you drank more water today than yesterday, even if it wasn't your desired eight glasses.

8. Use tools. – Utilize every resource that you have at your disposal. You can make lists, journals, charts, spreadsheets … anything that will help you to keep track of your goals. I often use sticky notes around the house. I will place reminders on walls, mirrors, the refrigerator, and anywhere else that I think they may be helpful. They may not look pretty but they help me to stay motivated.

9. Don't berate yourself for slip-us. – We all slip up from time to time. Just yesterday, I was snacking on a few potato chips while watching television. Before I knew it, the entire bag was empty! It happens to everyone. Realize this, and don't be too hard on yourself. Remind yourself of why you wanted to develop the habit in the first place, and then start again

"A man who can't bear to share his habits is a man who needs to quit them." – Stephen King, The Dark Tower

Why is it so difficult to break bad habits? There are things we do on a daily, or even hourly basis that we know aren't good for us. We bite our fingernails, smoke cigarettes, make unhealthy food choices, procrastinate, lead sedentary lives, etc. Every one of us has a bad habit that we would love to break, but we often have difficulty doing so. This is because, once a habit is developed, we rarely even notice we are doing it. It becomes part of who we are. If we want to improve our lives, breaking bad habits is a wonderful place to start.

Here are 5 common reasons why we often fail at breaking bad habits.

1. We expect results too quickly. – We didn't develop our bad habit in one day, and we certainly can't expect to break it in one day either. Breaking a habit takes time. We must be patient and persistent in our goals.

2. We have a low level of self-awareness. – I have been a nail biter for the majority of my life. I do it without even thinking and am usually not even aware that I have been chewing on them until I feel pain or see blood. This is because I am not always self-aware. We often go through life on autopilot, but when we are trying to break a habit, we need to slow down and pay attention to everything we are doing. We must make an attempt to really live in the moment. If we develop a stronger sense of self-awareness, we can head off our bad habits as soon as we begin doing them.

3. We use our habits as an emotional crutch. – Many of our habits, like smoking or turning to food when we are in need of comfort, serve as a coping mechanism for emotional stress or pain. We need to look for other, healthier substitutes for these habits. When I was trying to quit smoking, I would often exercise whenever I would feel an urge. The exercise took my mind off of my immediate craving and helped me to relieve my stress in a healthy way.

4. We don't tell anyone we are trying to break our habit. – Breaking a bad habit is extremely difficult. It is even more difficult when we do not have the support of our friends and family. We often fail to tell them out of fear. We think that by not telling them, we can avoid disappointing them if we fail. In order to successfully break a bad habit we must tell those we love and trust. They will give us the support we need and they will also make us accountable for our actions.

5. We are too hard on ourselves when we slip back into old patterns. – Just as developing new habits is hard, breaking old ones is extremely difficult. We will all slip up from time to time. We must stay positive and remember why we want to break our habits. Do you want to be a better role model for your children? Do you want to avoid a second heart attack? Do you want your nails to be beautiful for your wedding day? Whatever your motivation is, remember, there is a very good reason why you decided to break your bad habit in the first place. When we slip up and fall back into our bad patterns, we must take a moment to remember why it is important to break the habit. Then, we must start again.

I hope that these tips will help you to feel guided in having motivation to break habits you're not happy about or develop new ones you're proud of.

"Successful people are simply those with successful habits." -Brian Tracy

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Copenhagen in Denmark – Tourist For Culture and History of Denmark

Many cruise ships visit the capital of Denmark, Copenhagen, and stay a few days in this charming small capital. This isn’t a bad encounter with a capital of a country that has been there as a kingdom for more than 1000 years. Lying very far to the east of the country Copenhagen might seem to have a strange geographical position in the country.

Maps of Denmark will show how the east coast of Zealland (Sjælland) with Copenhagen and its harbour at the border of Oeresund, (Øresund) is lying at the entrance of the Baltic Sea, a water of huge importance at present days, and of even more importance through former history of Northern Europe.

The real background for the geographical position of Copenhagen that far east is that the Danish kingdom included for 800 years a large part of what is now southern Sweden, the counties Skåne, Halland and Blekinge, (up to year 1645). During hundreds of years this location of the capital was the ideal position exactly in the middle of the Danish Kingdom concerning east-west.

When you land with an airplane in Copenhagen you will land at the Kastrup Airport convenient situated just 12 minutes by the train to the central station of Copenhagen and in fact to the heart of Copenhagen. From the central station you will have easy access some of the main tourist attractions like Tivoli, the central square, museums and art galleries.

You should ask for a window seat for your trip to Copenhagen as you will often cross the water between Sweden and Denmark at the in-flight and you can enjoy seeing islands, lots of windmills and the big bridge between Denmark and Sweden. You will land at the very flat island of Amager and the train or taxi or Airport bus will quickly take you to the city centre.

What to see in Copenhagen

Hope you have a number of days – you will not regret it. This makes it possible for you to explore the central part of Copenhagen by walking. This will probably give you the most enjoyment and you will have the best chance to absorb the atmosphere of the Danish capital and the Danes’ way of behaving. Firstly you will remark the lots and lots of bicycles of the streets of Copenhagen. Danes like to bike as a convenient way of transport most of the year. Going by bike give no pollution and bikes are a nice and democratic way of moving around as all people will be able to afford a bicycle.

You will remark that Copenhagen is still free of skyscrapers, and the old classic buildings with green roofs and many spires are covered by corrugated cobber and give Copenhagen a special charm. The public transportation system is very good with yellow busses, the subway, called the S-train, and a Metro-line, and Copenhagen is very suitable for pedestrians.

In many places in Copenhagen you will find water, as channels, or lakes, or to the coast (harbour) towards the Sund. The water creates many nice sights and places you can rest and enjoy the local people.

Copenhagen also has a number of safe and attractive green parks and the admission to the Botanical garden is free, just near one of the main stations, Nørreport Station.

This is also just opposite to the charming castle Rosenborg, build by the Danish King Christian IV in the beginning of 1600 and surrounded by a nice park. One of the most visited tourist attractions of Copenhagen. And again when you are here, you are very near the National Gallery that hosts paintings and other kinds of art from much of the world in a nice building.

Other obvious places to visit in Copenhagen are Glyptoteket, next to Tivioli. Glyptoteket, full name Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek has outstanding collections of antic art and have a attractive small café, too.

On your route though the main walking street, Strøget, you will at at Kongens Nytorv and from there you can easily visit Nyhavn (‘New Harbour’) that was a sailors’ amusement area, but now is a very attractive place for tourists and Danes enjoying a beer and the good atmosphere.

From Nyhavn you can walk to the living place of the royal family at Amalienborg, a rather small but charming castle build around a large open square. On Sundays the Royal Garde will march and play back and forth to Amalienborg from their residence near the mentioned castle Rosenborg.

Copenhagen has many other attractions, one of the most visited in recent years has been the are Christiania, called a social experiment with many alternative ways of living and organising local inhabitants. You might have to hurry up to Christiania, as the part of Copenhagen is now becoming more mainstream like other parts of Copenhagen.

After some days in Copenhagen you might like to visit other parts of Denmark. This is easily done by train or buss. For example you can take the train to the small city Roskilde that has the graves of the kings an queens in its cathedral, and a very impressive museum with wiking ships at the coast of Roskilde fjord.

You can also take the train to the north of Copenhagen to the small city Ellsinore and visit the castle Kronborg, the famous castle of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. On the way back you can make a stop at Humlebæk and walk the Lousiana, a museum of modern art, and one of the very best and most attractive in Northern Europe.

And finally from Copenhagen you will have easy access to most of the remaining parts of Denmark, e.g. visiting the house of the fairy teller Hans Christian Andersen in Odense or Legoland in Billund. With train you can easily cross the water to visit Sweden with the city Malmoe in half an hour from Copenhagen Central Station.

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The Design and Construction of the Yamato Battleship

The Yamato was one of two Yamato-class battleships that had an overall tonnage which eclipsed 70,000 tons. As such, they were the largest battleships constructed by any navy. The Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) constructed the giant battleships during the 1930s and early 1940s, with the first blueprints laid down in 1934. However, they were gradually modified and refined.

The plans outlined how the Yamato would have a beam wider than the Panama Canal. The ship’s architects placed most of the battleship’s armor at the center of the ship. This actually left the bow and stern with minimal armor.

Construction of the Yamato began in 1937. The Kure Naval Dockyards were expanded to ensure that it would be deep enough to house the first Yamato-class battleships. They expanded the gantry crane to 100 tonnes, and the dockyards were also covered to make sure that the battleship construction could not be detected.

They constructed the battleship with arc wielding. More than 1,000 watertight compartments were added to the Yamato during the construction period. In comparison the Titanic ocean liner had 15 watertight compartments. A steam turbine was also added to the battleship, but the ship still had a high fuel consumption rate. Higher fuel requirements limited the Yamato’s fuel supply and the distances it could cover.

The most essential addition to the Yamato battleship was its extensive arsenal. The IJN fitted the Yamato with a caliber of guns that U.S. battleships could not match. The Yamato’s primary guns were some 18.1 inches. These were the largest added to any battleship, and were mounted in three turrets. They had armor-piercing shells that weighed some 2,998 pounds, and each of the battleship’s gun turrets matched the weight of one U.S. destroyer. The battleship had a maximum range of about 25 miles.

The primary guns were formidable, but the Yamato’s anti-aircraft arsenal was not so extensive. During construction, the IJN added only 24 AA machine guns to its decks. By 1945, that number had increased to something like 150, mostly triple turret, AA machine guns. They included Type 96 25 mm AA guns. However, during Operation Ten-Go the guns only took out a small number of U.S. planes.

Although a battleship the Yamato could also support a small number of aircraft. The ship had suitable space for several floatplanes, which were the Aichi E13A. They were primarily scouting aircraft dispatched to spot enemy ships and fleets, but they also included a 250 kg bomb-load. As the battleship also had various types of radar the reconnaissance planes were not always required.

Construction of the Yamato was complete by 1940. Then the IJN added the battleship to their fleets, as the flagship, but the Yamato was seldom dispatched for naval battles. At the Battle of Midway it was a naval support ship, but in later battles such as the Battle of Leyte Gulf it was at the front line of the IJN. There the Yamato and its fleet wiped out two U.S. warships at Samar.

In 1945, the IJN sent the Yamato on another mission during the Battle of Okinawa. Operation Ten-Go required that the battleship beach itself ashore the coastline of Okinawa as a shore battery. With no air cover it could not reach Okinawa, and U.S. aircraft intercepted it. The subsequent aerial bombardment ensured that the Yamato flooded with water. A last great battleship was lost at sea. Then it was clear that battleships were outmoded in the new era of aircraft carrier fleets.

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The Greatest Life Insurance Salesman in the World

I grew up in a small town on the Ohio River called East Liverpool. It is located in Ohio at the junction of Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. When I was growing up it had a population of about 22,000. Today the population has dropped to just over 13,000. However, some very unique and notable people have come from my town. I want to tell you about one of them who learned the meaning of providing value for his clients so well that he went on to become the greatest life insurance salesman ever.

His name was Ben Feldman (1912 – 1993) and over his 50 year career selling insurance for one company, his sales volume exceeded $1.8 billion, with over a third of it coming after he turned 65. And, he did it by selling out of his office in East Liverpool and not some major financial capital city like New York.

Ben Feldman came from the sleepy little town of Salineville, Ohio, where he started his business career selling chicken and eggs for $ 5 a week. As an aspiring businessperson, he wanted to enter the insurance field but was unable to pass the basic Equitable Life Insurance Company’s aptitude test.

In typical Feldman fashion, he sold himself to Equitable, and began collecting premiums on meager nickel and dime policies. In 1942, he joined New York Life, and opened a small office in the Little Building, on the Diamond, in downtown East Liverpool. It was from this location that he began a relentless quest to achieve membership in the prestigious Million Dollar Round Table. He made it in 1946.

Little did anyone suspect that he would far surpass the million dollar mark, however, in 1955, he sold $10 million in coverage. He then began selling one million a month, then a million a week, and in 1971 wrote contracts for over $65 million. He then gunned for $10 million a month and in 1983, with the help of his two sons, Marvin and Richard, he sold $148 million of insurance.

Feldman was an innovator, who made it easy for his clients to understand the complexities of the Federal Estate tax law, which desecrated the fortunes of a large number of wealthy individuals in the period that followed World War II. Long before computer graphics, he created clever hand-drawn charts, illustrating the need for life insurance to protect an individual’s assets from the government. He would book himself on airplane flights, next to a potential client, where upon he would open his brief case, stuffed with $100, $500 and $1,000 bills, along with his charts and graphs. The idea was to entice his neighbor to notice the money and remark, «Is that real money?» «Yes,» Ben would reply, «but I’m not afraid to carry it, because it’s insured.» With such an opening, a sales presentation was a lay-up.

A lover of luxurious automobiles, Feldman would often be seen racing up and down the highways that link Pittsburgh and Youngstown in his Cadillac Eldorado. It was within this 50-mile corridor that he sold the majority of his policies. Often equipped with a CB radio and a car telephone – long before anyone had heard of such a device – he handled rejection like none other.

A favorite Feldman method was to approach the office of a busy executive and ask for an appointment. The response from a frazzled secretary would usually be, «I’m sorry, his time is too valuable.» Ben would ask, «Is it worth $100 a minute?» «At least!» would be the answer, to which the response (accompanied by five brand new one hundred dollar bills,) would be, «Well I’d like to buy five minutes.»

Even when Ben Feldman would go deep sea fishing, he would spend his time developing new sales techniques, memorizing the entire New York Life Insurance rate book. And, he would arm himself with pithy little phrases, designed to overcome the most difficult challenge. To the potential client who said, «I believe in term insurance.» Ben would respond, «Term insurance is temporary, but your problem is permanent.» «I can’t afford the premium,» would invoke, «You are already broke and don’t even know it.»

Following in the footsteps of such a legend was not easy for Marv and Rich Feldman, but they handled the challenge well as Marv became president of the Million Dollar Table in 2001, and Rich excelled in a number of endeavors, including «drag racing,» of all things.

Now you might be thinking to yourself that Ben must have been some kind of superstar, good looking, fast talking, kind of man – but you’d be wrong. Ben was a short, stout, balding and spoke slowly with a distinct lisp. He never finished high school. He was so shy that years later when he was asked to speak at insurance industry meetings, he would only agree to if a screen was erected between him and the audience.

But, he was a legend when it came to making a point to know every business owner in his region. He did his homework first and learned all he could about his potential customers so that by the time he met with them (often on a «cold call») he was ready with the right Value Development Questions. He didn’t always sell right away but he never gave up. I once heard him say that for years he didn’t stop working for the day until he made at least one sale – no matter how late it got.

One of favorite stories about Ben is about a prominent real estate developer. Ben tried for weeks to get in to see the busy man but was always unsuccessful. One day, Ben stopped in cold and handed the developer’s assistant the envelope with five $100 bills and asked her to give it to her boss. He told her «If I don’t have a good idea for him, he can keep the money.» He got in and sold a $14 million policy. Years later when Ben realized the man need additional insurance due to the unprecedented growth of his company; he was once again stymied by the man’s insistence that he was too busy to take a physical. Undaunted, Ben rented a fully equipped mobile hospital van, hired a doctor and sent them to the industrialist. Rumor is that the man ended up with over $50 million in coverage.

In 1992, New York Life marked Ben’s 50th year with the company by proclaiming «Feldman’s February», a national sales competition. Ben took this as a personal challenge. The winner of the contest (at 80 years old) was Ben Feldman.

Ben was famous for his sayings that he used to inspire both clients and himself. My favorite is:

«Doing something costs something.

Doing nothing costs something.

And quite often, doing nothing costs a lot more.»

Ben Feldman died in 1993 at 81. A few years before his death he was asked about the largest policy that he had ever written. «I can’t say. I haven’t written it yet.»

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The Oldest International Stadium in Football – The Racecourse Ground

The Racecourse Ground: Wrexham

The Racecourse ground situated in Wrexham, North East Wales is the oldest International Football Stadium in the World and has been the venue for some of British Football’s most historic memories. The following article details the fascinating history of the stadium.

The Racecourse Ground («Y Cae Ras» in Welsh language) is the long term home of Wrexham Football Club who currently ply their trade in the Blue Square Premier league, the Racecourse is the largest stadium in this league with a capacity of 15,000, however this is currently reduced to 10,500 due to the kop stand being closed awaiting renovation to take the ground to being an all seater venue. In early 2010 Super League (Rugby League) side The Crusaders relocated to Wrexham and now use The Racecourse Ground as their home base.

In the 1800’s the Ground was owned by Wrexham Cricket Club and was a venue for Cricket and Horse Racing (hence the grounds name). In 1872 Wrexham Football Club was born and thus the ground became a football stadium. In those days however it was less of a «stadium» due to the lack of facilities. The first stand to be built was the kop terracing in the 1950’s whch is the oldest remaining part of the gound. The current away supporters stand (Eric Roberts Builders Stand) was built in 1978 following Wrexham’s most successful period on the pitch. By this time floodlights had already long been installed. In 1999 the ground was brought to it’s current standards with the completion of a 3500 capacity, modern designed stand including restaurant and bar facilities. The current capacity of 15000 is dwarfed by the record recorded attendance of amlost 35,000 people to witness an FA Cup tie against Manchester United in the 1950’s

The Racecourse Ground’s most distinguishing fact is that it is recorded in the Guinness Book of Records as being the oldest International Football Stadium in current use. Over the years it has hosted many Wales International matches meaning the roll call of world greats to have graced the Racecourse changing rooms is long and distinguished. The Raceourse ground was the venue when Wales beat England 4-1 in the then Home Nations Tournament, a game still oft referred to and featured on television programmes. Similarly the Racecourse ground is featured annually on the weekend of the FA Cup third round having been the venue for the greatest FA Cup giant killing of all time when Wrexham beat current league champions Arsenal 2-1 in 1990.

The ground is no stranger to club level European football either, Wrexham enjoyed many ventures in the European Cup Winners cup and in recent years Welsh sides Bangor City and Total Network Solutions have used the venue for their European ties.

The Racecourse ground is also a favourite rugby venture. Currently the home of Rugby league team «The Crusaders» it has also been used by Rugby Union region «The Scarlets» as well as playing host to World Cup Rugby League and International Rugby Union matches.

The future of the Racecourse ground is that Wrexham Football Clubs owners plan to redevelop land behind the top end of the ground into student accommodation whilst rebuilding the kop stand into a multi purpose stand. The future may be different from the past but it is certain that the history and memories of the ground will live forever.

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