I have three New Year’s resolutions:
– Waking up everyday by 6:00 AM
– Writing every morningand sharing it with the world
– Closing out my night and planning my next day (using the Best Self Journal)
At New Year’s Eve dinner, my sister Sami was quick to point out I have had these same goals for years… Well, in 2018, I haven’t missed a day on any of them yet. So what is different this year? What has led to this fast, consistent start?
I utilized three strategies from James Clear.
I focused more on the scheduling to create an environment conducive to the habitual routine needed to achieve the goal rather than on the achievement itself. Citing over 100 separate studies, James concluded “people who explicitly state when and where their new behaviors are going to happen are much more likely to stick to their goals.” Having a plan to implement my intentions has been critical to the early success this year.
I spent ample time shifting my identity: from being a person who aspires to wake up early and write to somebody who is an early riser and a writer. Per his advice, I decided the person I wanted to be and am proving it to myself with small wins every day.
Lastly, I have been using the Seinfeld strategy to measure these three habits. Jerry Seinfeld claimed to a young comedian seeking his advice that his secret to success is to writes jokes everyday and mark an “X” on a calendar for each day he does. By measuring each day with an X, a chain of X’s began to form. With each day that is successful, the chain continues to grow longer. As human beings we love continuity of progress, so we fall in love with seeing the chain, and then our only job becomes not to break it!
You can check out my chain below! By tonight I will be 8 for 8 and am excited to keep it going all year long.
Reading James’ weekly articles helped me begin turning these three New Year’s resolutions into habits in 2018. I am excited to continue to perfect these using the strategies above so I can begin to focus on other areas of my life I aspire to improve as well.
If I miss a day, not to worry. James has written about how to bounce back after missing a day too! 🙂