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Habits

Updated: Aug 12, 2021





Habits make up who we are, it is our identity but this can change overtime. It is very important that we remind ourselves of this,


‘Habits are not a finish line to be crossed, they are a lifestyle to be lived’ -James Clear




 




Habits are the small decisions you make and actions you perform every day. According to researchers at Duke University, habits account for about 40 percent of our behaviours on any given day. Your life today is essentially the sum of your habits. When you learn to transform your habits, you can transform your life.


James Clears’ book ‘Atomic Habits’ is where you will learn a lot about habits. He will teach you that there are no good or bad habits, just habits that will contribute to our goals and habits that will not. In his book Atomic Habits, James Clear speaks about an ice cube in the room. It sits there and nothing happens. You raise the temperature by one degree, still nothing happens. Again, another degree, nothing happens; another degree and absolutely nothing has happened. But all it takes is one degree above freezing for it to begin to melt. We should keep this analogy in mind in life and not expect our ice cubes to melt immediately after changing the temperature by a degree or two. You need to focus on it degree by degree- maintaining steady habits to achieve change.





In the Tokyo Olympics the Olympic weightlifters achieved what they did because of repetition; there are no shortcuts to getting a good snatch or clean and jerk. They put in hours of training and thousands of repetitions.


If you want to stick with a habit for good, one simple and effective thing you can do is keep a habit tracker. Elite performers will often measure, quantify, and track their progress in various ways. Each little measurement provides feedback. It offers a signal of whether they are making progress or need to change course. Each day you stick with your routine. For example, if you meditate on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, each of those dates gets an X. As time rolls by, the calendar becomes a record of your habit streak.

Habit formation is a long race. It often takes time for the desired results to appear. And while you are waiting for the long-term rewards of your efforts to accumulate, you need a reason to stick with it in the short-term. You need some immediate feedback that shows you are on the right path. The most basic format is to get a calendar and cross it off .When you look at the calendar and see your streak, you’ll be reminded to act again. The most effective form of motivation is progress. When we get a signal that we are moving forward, we become more motivated to continue down that path. In this way, habit tracking can have an addictive effect on motivation. Each small win feeds your desire.






Finally, tracking feels rewarding. It is satisfying to cross an item off your to-do list, to complete an entry in your workout log, or to mark an X on the calendar. It feels good to watch your results grow and if it feels good, then you’re more likely to endure.






 

Common daily habits to track:

  • Journal 1 sentence

  • Read 1 page

  • Meditate 1 minute

  • Do 1 push up

  • Stretch for 1 minute

  • Write 1 thing I'm grateful for

  • Wake up by [TIME]

  • Go to bed by [TIME]

  • Take a shower

  • Floss teeth

  • weigh myself

These examples of habits are easy and don’t take much time. This will make you more likely to stick to your habits. For it to become a habit you need to repeat it regularly.



- Ci

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