My first attempt at 36 months of new habits ended about 10% of the way through. This was the initial list of attempted habits — preserved here for study and a reminder to try again when you stumble.
01 / May 2012 / Stopped drinking Coke
I actually started this 3 weeks before reading the post above — but unknowingly using the same logic of starting each habit small, building up. I started that challenge for 2 reasons: (1) To prove I could, to succeed and to exert my will over my life (as dumb as that sounds). I knew that if I could go through with drastically reducing, if not cutting out Coke altogether, long-term that it would make it easier to reach a different goal. (2) More importantly I
was am tired of being overweight and my 3-4 cans of Coke a day seemed as central a culprit as anything else.
I’ve not really reflected much on this 30-day challenge — a measly 3 posts — but I think that has a lot to do with a growth curve I’m on right now taking up a lot of mental energy and some time (while of course helping to liberate more time in the long-run!).
02 / June 2012 / Stop drinking sugary drinks
Really just the next step down off the ledge from quitting my Cokes, so maybe it’s cheating a little to spread this over 2 months, but whatever. I’d guess that of the Cokes I used to drink, I’ve substituted 60% lemonade or sweet tea, 20% water and the other 20% were Cokes that I didn’t replace with anything, so there’s still some habits to be formed there.
Coda 01 & 02: I’ve cut down to 1 sugary drink, a most, a week and sometimes none. I drink almost exclusively water (with lemon) at home and when we go out to eat.
03 / July 2012 / Stick to daily schedule at work
I’m starting late this month because of shifting schedules but from July 9 to the end of the month I will work to stick to a stricter schedule at work, wherein I work on my 3 Most Important Things (MITs in zenhabits’ lingo) in the morning, with a brief break for tasks just before lunch then 30 min of FEA social media work and Projects in the afternoon. This coincides a bit with finishing up reading Leo Babauta’s book, focus. The habit I’m trying to develop here is to be organized and disciplined at work, to minimize distractions — with the real goal of keeping work at work and enjoying my home life.
04 / August 2012 / TBA (poss. internet “unplug” at home except for preplanned tasks)
And that’s as much as I want to map out for now. Some other potential ideas:
- getting more sleep/getting up early
- reading everyday: This would have been next on my list anyways probably, but this from Matt seemed right outta my own head:
In the next month… I added reading to my new stable of healthy habits. Just a little bit each day, gradually increasing to half an hour each day, and sometimes more. I’ve always loved reading and called myself a reader. The difference is now I do it.
- quiet & alone time (how does this differ from meditation?)
- exercise or walk daily
- digitizing my files
- eating better, healthier, more intentionally
- stop using my credit card
- decluttering (avoiding clutter to begin with; from LRW 2011)
- planning & setting goals
- staying in touch with friends
Need to do some more thinking/reading about habits vs. goals.