For most people, brushing teeth is a part of their everyday routine. But what if it was more than that? Through your daily dental hygiene routine, you can improve your overall wellness and set yourself up for success using Microsteps. The best part: Using Microsteps, or habit stacking, is a simple, and not overwhelming, way to achieve your goals.
Microsteps are little science-based habits you can add to your life right now to help you change your life for the better long term. This concept is based on something called "habit stacking,” the fact it’s scientifically proven you can create a healthy new habit by stacking it onto an existing one.
How Microsteps and Your Daily Routine Work Together
Step 1: To get started with Microsteps, first make a list of your morning or night routine. This will help you identify the habits you already have in your day (even if you hadn’t recognized them as habits before). Since most of us brush our teeth twice a day, these are great places to start.
Step 2: After you make your list of habits, make a list of new habits you’d like to develop or goals you‘d like to achieve.
Need somewhere to start? Think about both internal and external goals. Being more mindful or positive are great internal goals. Being more structured or improving your career are more external goals.
Step 3: Now, make a list of small steps you can take toward those goals. For example, if your goal is to improve your leadership qualities, some simple steps would be to read or listen to leadership literature, find a leadership mentor or attend a leadership conference.
Step 4: Finally, stack those steps onto habits you already have. For example, for our leadership development goal, try listening to a podcast on leadership development while you get ready in the morning. This takes advantage of time you’ve already allotted in your day, so it won’t feel like you’re adding too much to your life.
How to Use Dental Hygiene and Microsteps Together
As mentioned above, your dental hygiene is a great place to start using Microsteps. For example, say you want to have a more positive outlook in your life. That’s a great goal. The Microstep for that goal is to think of three things you are grateful for while you brush your teeth in the morning. This way you’ve “stacked” the habit of being thankful onto the habit of brushing your teeth.
If you’re an Oral-B Connect user, you can embed Microsteps right inside the app! Leverage your daily brushing insights to track your progress.
For instance, if you notice you are not brushing for the dentist-recommended two minutes, try to find ways to make achieving this goal easier. For your morning routine, use these two minutes while you’re brushing your teeth to mentally get ready for your day; at night, use these two minutes while brushing to try to destress and focus on your breathing before you go to sleep. Over time, brushing for two minutes will become a healthy habit that’s easy to maintain.