I am sure you must have heard the quote ” We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” by Aristotle.
A habit is simply anything you do with no effort because it is second nature to you. I had set a goal for myself late last year to wake up every morning at 5:00 AM in order to study, meditate and exercise before I got ready for work. It sucked the first few weeks because my body was not wired to get up that early.
I abused the snooze button, complained as I finally crawled out of bed sometimes at about 5:45 AM and simply got ready to head out of the house. Did I beat myself up about it?
At the beginning yes, but after while, I acknowledged that it was alright if I did not wake up at 5:00 AM every morning. I also reviewed my daily activities and decided to cut back on some non-productive tasks so that I could go to sleep early. By doing that, I was able to wake up close to 5:00 AM which was a huge improvement for me.
Let’s say you wanted to write a 50 page e-book for example, if you just woke up 40 minutes early every morning and wrote for 30 minutes, your book will be completed in less than 2 months. Do you see how one small change can really have a huge cumulative effect on your productivity?
Here are 5 tips for creating new habits –
- Write down the habits you would like to improve on and why are you want to work on them.If you are unsure of the habits you want to improve. Think of someone you really admire, why you admire them and what it is about them that you can incorporate into your life.
- Decide that you are going to give it your all even if you do not know how you are going to follow through. You may amazed at the people who will show up to support you.
- Make it fun – It is not that serious. Play around with different ways you can have fun creating your new habits.If you want to create an oversized poster with your list of habits or record yourself saying them out loud..go for it. Laugh at yourself through out the process.
- Create a collage of positive affirmations for each habit you want to change and place them where you will likely see them every day.Take sometime every day to re-write them down.
- Take stock of how you are doing and make adjustments if needed.
My list of New Habits For 2015
- ♥Write down my 3 most important tasks for each day the night before I go to bed
- ♥Wake up 30 minutes ahead of everyone in the morning and study
- ♥Meditate for 30 minutes daily
- ♥Exercise for 30 minutes daily
- ♥Follow through on my commitments
- ♥Eat fresh fruits and greens
- ♥Write a blog article at least 3 times weekly
- ♥Switch off while I focus on one task at a time
- ♥Write an appreciation list when I feel like it
- ♥Schedule time for social media
Will I beat myself up if I miss a day, two or more? Absolutely not. The goal for writing them down and working on them is to increase my productivity and amplitude of focus. Looking back, I did not really have a daily routine, so I did whatever I wanted whenever I wanted and neglected the most important tasks.
You can write your list of habits if it calls to you and even create a poster to serve as a reminder.
But does that mean you are going to follow through and do the work?
You get to decide!
It takes a high level of commitment to really change your habit patterns and the benefits are amazing. And when you find yourself falling off track. Know that it is okay. You can jump right back on and keep going. You could also DECIDE to work on one habit at a time. You can do it. It is EASY.
Do you have any habits you are working on improving? What strategies work for you? I would love to hear your story.
To your Growth,