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Are you a creature of habit?

Perhaps you commute to work on your bike, keep your shopping bags in your car or have a water bottle in your bag at all times.

Habits are things we do automatically, without too much thinking.

They help us save cognitive energy (which we have a very limited amount of) so we can focus on more complex things like performing our work duties or cooking a meal.

Whether you consider yourself a creature of habit or a ‘go with the flow’ type, we can all benefit from forming good habits.

Let’s say that you want to ensure you bring your reusable cup with you every time you leave the house.

Here's how best to form this new habit:

Start with a cue

Every habit starts with a cue, something that reminds you to do what you want to do.

With the case of a reusable cup, it’s a good idea to put it somewhere where you can see it.

Maybe it’s on the kitchen bench, next to your keys, backpack or front door, or a post-it note on your fridge.

It’s important to find what works for you. Keeping it in the back of the cupboard, unfortunately, will not do the trick.


Keep at it! They say that habit forms in 21 days – that's not entirely true, but the principle is right. The more you do it, the more habitual it becomes.


The third step is reward. It can be anything that feels rewarding to you - getting a thank you from your barista, a warm feeling of saving that single-use cup from landfill or even getting yourself a cookie to go with that cup of coffee.

If it makes you feel good, it works.

The more you do the habit, the less reward is going to be needed – so don’t worry about spending a fortune on cookies.

Support your new habit

The environment around us also plays a big role. If the cafés you're frequenting do not accept reusables, you're unlikely to keep using your cup. If you support businesses that encourage your BYO cup, have reusable systems and mug libraries, it will definitely help you on your journey to habit land.


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