When it comes to trying to develop a healthy habit, it can be difficult to just do it!

That is why combining habits, also known as “habit stacking”, is a great way to create new habits and make them part of your daily routine.

We all have our usual habits that we do every day which require little thinking. Like brushing our teeth before bed. These habits and behaviours are developed and strengthened over years.

‘Habit Stacking’ is a method used to link a new behaviour to an already established habit. Sound easy? The idea is that the first habit will trigger another, and with time it will become effortless to do.

The formula: After / before (current habit) I will (new habit)

Starting new behaviours takes time, but before you know it, you will be building a much healthier lifestyle.

How to get started with Habit Stacking:

Step one

Choose a habit already in place that you do weekly, daily or even multiple times a day such as making coffee for morning tea at work

Step two

Pair this with a healthy habit you want to add to your routine such as drinking more water. For example: Before drinking my coffee, I will drink 1 glass of water.

From here, you can continue building, by adding another habit to the original. For example, after drinking my coffee, I will take a piece of fruit to my desk to have it as my snack.

Try out this stacking method and see if you can make long term changes to your daily routine.

Note: This method, which was originally created by BJ Fogg as part of his Tiny Habits program https://www.tinyhabits.com/


Written by Sarah Dirani and Nicole Dynan Accredited Practising Dietitians