The most important factor of habits
In a small European country Slovenia, which lies between the Europe’s largest mountain range Alps, the Adriatic sea, and the Pannonian flat-land, there is a saying that goes: “a habit is a shirt, made of steel“. And it’s true. Have you ever tried to get rid of a (bad) habit, or to replace it with a good one? Well, it takes a lot of determination, but what’s very important on the way are time and discipline. Determination should serve only as a motivation point.
As you may see, many people will be able to tell that self motivation and consistency have a lot of relation, that consistency is key to success, and there are multiple posts written about the topic. But how do you achieve it?
If you want to turn a certain activity into a habit, then consistency is the key. Research shows that after 3 weeks of consistently doing a certain thing, it starts to be much easier to do it. Our mind and body get used to it.
So let’s imagine you decide to start going to fitness (a kind of real scenario for many).
The first thing you need is motivation. Since you considered going there, you probably have a bit of it. But is it enough to last for 3 weeks and beyond? Well, that’s something to figure out on your own. Do you like it? Does it help you get to your goals? What is the exact reason you started going to fitness anyway? Decide why you do it. You may even write it down. And then start.
Now the second thing is – as with everything in life – the time. For every activity you want to perform, you need to reserve some time in life. If you are motivated enough and determined that you will do it every day for the next 3 weeks – and keep going with it even afterwards – then you need to make sure that every day, you will have that hour (or whatever time you plan to spend there), reserved. No excuses, no priorities above that.
And that’s what DayPipe is beautiful for. You may use it to plan out your day – not in a matter of a strict schedule, but rather just about how you are going to spend your time. Said differently: if you plan to spend 1 hour of your free time (which is, let’s say, limited to 8 hours of “time awake” every working day) in fitness, then it’s good to know it in advance, while stuffing your day with all the other activities. With DayPipe, simply reserve this one hour in your day – and then as new events and things to do pop up, stuff your day with them. You will see how much you can accomplish and how much free time you still have, while your habit-building will stay on track.
During those 3 weeks, things will get hard sometime. You may become lazy or look for excuses to skip the activity. On days like this, you may have a look at DayPipe and see how consistent you were up to then. You may keep remarks on how you are progressing. Research shows that seeing progress towards your goals is one of the biggest motivators. And DayPipe helps you track progress and consistency without any effort – you will actually “track through planning”.
I’ve made a few habits already using DayPipe. Once you get there – don’t stop, just keep scheduling. What are your experience with that?
I wish you happy “habiting”!