Struggle No More, Make Behavioral Change with 7R’s

Behavioral change is not easy, nor is it linear.

Are you struggling to maintain a new behavior?

Does your motivation wax and wane, or do you lose motivation after a few days or weeks? If so, you’re not alone.

Research suggests that starting a behavior is easy, but sticking with it over the long term can be challenging.

Russ Harris has developed the Seven R’s framework to help people sustain motivation in maintaining new behaviors. The 7Rs are easy-to-remember guiding principles, including Reminders, Records, Rewards, Routine, Relationships, Reflection, and Restructuring. 

Apply the 7Rs to a goal you have for yourself. 


1. Reminders

Set reminders through Google alerts or your calendar to keep you on track. Smart Apps also help to track habits and behaviors. Visual cues are also highly effective reminders. You can leave sticky notes and use pop-up screen savers with essential phrases. 


2. Records

Track and monitoring progress through record keeping helps with effort and execution. Keeping a diary that monitors your progress is quite effective. It keeps you motivated and gives you a data point to review periodically. 


3. Rewards

Rewards can be a powerful way to celebrate progress toward your goal or behavioral change.  Reinforcers can be powerful and aid in feeling a sense of accomplishment.  


4. Routine

Establish a routine that supports your new behavior. Consider building a regular pattern or ritual and set aside dedicated, uninterrupted time to become habituated around your new behavior.  Routinizing things aid in consistency and structure. 


5. Relationships

Surround yourself with supportive people that can hold you accountable, encourage you, and help you stay motivated. For instance, having a workout buddy is more likely to increase your success in working out. 


6. Reflection

Could you take time to reflect on your progress and identify areas of improvement? This entails thinking about what you need to do more or less, brainstorming new approaches, and problem-solving to develop new strategies to achieve your goals. 


7. Restructuring

You can restructure your environment to support your new behavior. For instance, if you are trying to exercise, lay out your clothes the night before so you’re ready to go in the morning.  Consider removing clutter, distractions, and obstacles that may hinder progress.


Consider utilizing these effective evidenced-based strategies and solutions to sustain motivation and maintain new behavior over the long term. So, what new behavior are you aiming to maintain? The Seven Rs can help you stay motivated and achieve your goals. You may mix and match these methods and create your tools. Good luck!

Recent Posts:

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Recommended Reading

The Key to Lasting Behavioral Change: Think Goal, Not Tactic by Elizabeth Grace Saunders 

Why You Should Make Time for Self-Reflection Even If You Hate Doing It by Jennifer Porter 


Meet Jodie, your Culture & Transformation Captain. With over twenty years helping people change, facilitating team discussions, building cultures, designing, implementing and teaching classes, your organization is in good hands.