It's hard to change things, especially if its about your own life. We all laugh about New Year resolutions, because we know how hard it is to achieve them.
There is a lot of writing about the crucial role of creating new habits, if you really want to change something in the longterm for yourself. A few months ago I read the "The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg, in which he explains why habits exist, how powerful habits could be and how they can be changed. An easy and fascinating read for the non behavioural scientists in us.
It inspired me to think more about habits and how it could be useful for me. So I started reading several blogs in this area and became a fan of the Zenhabits blog by Leo Babauta. Recently I stumbled about Leo's post below, and decided: I will try it, too.
Let's make it to an offical project. 12 changes in one year. Let's do this!
- Have a list and don't break the chain!
"Don't Break The Chain" is a simple productivity tip by Jerry Seinfeld. It's an unique calendar system he uses to pressure himself to write every day. He puts a big calendar on the wall, and for each day that he does his task of writing, he puts a big red X over that day. "After a few days you'll have a chain. Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. You'll like seeing that chain, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt. Your only job next is to not break the chain." So the most important thing is your list. It will be your daily success. Every kind of calendar or list with the the days of the month will do it. I use the Lift iPhone app, to cross one day off, when I reached my daily goal. And then: Don't break the chain! Easy.
- Make it to the most important thing of your day!
It's always a thing of priorities. Commit to it.
- Change just ONE thing!
In the beginning, we all are excited to finally get things done, and we think, hey let's start with all of the things on the list. But this is the first step to failing. There is some interesting research in the field of willpower. We have just a limited amount of it, everyday, so focus. Do one thing. There will be days when it's not that easy.
- Choose a trigger!
A trigger is basically all kinds of events, habits or things in your day that happen on regular basis. For example waking up, going to work, drinking a coffee, going to the toilet, et cetera, you get the idea.These trigger moments can help you to remember you to your habit. The key is to bind your trigger to your new habit.
- Reward yourself!
It’s important to enjoy doing your new habit. And part of it celebrating the small wins. It’s a powerful self motivating cicle to get little immediate rewards.
That's the few things that are important to me for now and I will add more to this list, as I am going forward.
The 12 projects
A nice thing by starting this MetaProject is that I can creat every month a new #Fork project page. Find the links below to see in more detail how I tried to change things for the better. I have not decided about all 12 habits, but I keep the list updated.
- February 2014:
Waking up before 7am (at least 6 times a week).
- March 2014:
Reading one book per week.
- April 2014:
Daily Email Inbox Zero, Checking emails just 3 times a day.
A project by:
Stefan Perkol (79)
Bio: Never say never.
Did you like the project? How about trying it yourself? Fork it and make it your own!