I have a whiteboard in my bedroom which i use to track my habits. On the whiteboard, i drew a large table, split by days (21 days to cultivate a new habit) and by habits. For the days where i do the habit, i will give it a check. For the days I dont, i make a cross. Its very satisfying to do the checks every time you finish a habit! You can also track your habits on paper or in your computer.
Developing a short Agenda
Waking up early at 5am means Im ahead of most people in the world (and myself too, if I were to stick to my old schedule and that motivates me to work fast and stay animal ahead. What helps me continue this momentum is that i end my tasks earlier and start the next task before the scheduled timing. By ensuring I stay ahead of my schedule, im naturally motivated to work on all the things I have planned, including my habits. Theres no resistance to get them started at all. If a task is taking more time than needed, then I make a choice. Either I: Hurry up and get it done deprioritize the unnecessary or Borrow time out for my later tasks to continue working on the current one. This also means I have to work faster for the remainder of the day. This decision-making process is important, because otherwise you will end up playing catch-up for the rest of the day, which affects all your planned habits/activities. Subsequently, it also affects your will to maintain your habits. Stay ahead of your schedule and you will find it easier to stay motivated. Track your Habits Tracking keeps you accountable to your habits.
It just takes me about 10 minutes to get each days schedule done. Not surprisingly, i have allocate time in my daily schedule to do my scheduling for the next day (11-11:10pm). All you have to do is create a template once, and then you can reapply this template for the other days. There will be similar items across all out days that can be reapplied, such as times, so its really very straight forward. If you dont plan for when exactly to get the habit done and instead just arbitrarily say that you want it to be done sometime today, then theres a very high chance it might not get done. This is why most peoples habits dont stick. Other things will invariably keep popping in and youd engage them without realizing it and throw your schedule off track. From there, other things get pushed back and you never get to carry out your habit. Stay friendship ahead of your Schedule i found its extremely motivating to stay ahead.
With all this planning done, when the next day comes all I have to do is to follow the schedule to a tee. I keep a close watch on the timing to ensure Im on time. 5 minutes before its up, i do a wrap bill up and start transiting to the next task on the list. The beauty of having a precise schedule is it helps me know exactly when Im taking more time than desired, and this helps me work on being more efficient. There are some timings which absolutely have to be protected, such as my sleeping/waking times and appointment times, so in that sense the time allocated on my tasks are fixed. That means I have to work more efficiently. Advertising It may seem like a hassle, but it really isnt.
Major projects would have most amount of time assigned. The principle i usually go by is ( time spent) for a-b-c groups respectively. Be aware of how much time each task requires. If it helps, most of the time we underestimate the time we need. Make it a realistic yet challenging time to work towards. Usually i assign a 5-10 minutes buffer time in between tasks to account for the transition from 1 task to the next. Assign exact timings for when each task starts and ends. For example, 9am to 10:30am for Project a, 12:30-1:30pm for lunch, 6:30-7:30pm for commute. If there are more tasks to be done than my schedule allows, Ill deprioritize the unimportant ones and put them off to another day.
How to Write an Agenda for a meeting (with Sample Agendas)
This means my sleeping time and subsequently my waking time does not get affected. Meditating clears out mental clutter and reduces the amount of sleep I need. Usually i sleep about pro6-10 hours, but on the nights I meditate, i require about 5-6 hours. Switching to a raw vegan diet has helped to increase my mental clarity, which meant I dont need to sleep as much as before. Im not saying that you need to go raw vegan just to cultivate a habit of sleeping/waking early, just that I noticed this particular benefit when I switched to this diet.
You can sleep and wake up early perfectly fine by changing other habits. Plan For your Habits (Right down to the timings) having a schedule lets you know when you are on or off track for your habits. For the 1st day of my new lifestyle, i did a full-day planning and continued thereafter for all other days. What resume I do is this: On the night before, put together a list life all the tasks I need to get done for the next day. This includes whats on my calendar (I use Gcal ). Batch them into (a) Major projects, (b) Medium sized tasks and (c) Small, administrative activities Slot them into my schedule for the day.
This meant that to make my waking early habit stick, (1) I need to change habits that are related to waking early (see tip 2) and (2) I have to be more realistic in my planning. Rather than stuff in so many tasks for a day and not finishing them, now I go for a challenging yet achievable schedule and complete my tasks accordingly. Keep asking why to drill down to the root reason. Once you get to the real cause, you can immediately resolve the issue. Pick habits that reinforce each Other.
Our habits are not standalone; they are interlinked. Some habits have a stronger linkage with each other than others. For example, sleeping early and waking early are obviously linked to each other, while sleeping early and reading a book a day might not be so closely related. If you want to cultivate a habit, identify the other habits that are tied with it and make a holistic change. These habits will reinforce each other to help make the change seamless. For example, my new habits to: (a) wake up early at 5am (b) Sleep before 12am (c) be on time (d) Meditate (e) have raw food diet are all interlinked. Waking up early means I more time to do my tasks, which helps me to sleep earlier in the night. This helps me to wake up early the next day. Being on time helps me to get my tasks completed on time, which helps me adhere to the days schedule.
The importance of the agenda msu extension
Why did I sleep late? Because i had too many things. Why did I have so many things to do? Because i cant finish them. Why cant I finish them? Because i schedule more resume tasks than I can empire accomplish for the day. Getting down to this root cause helped me realize two things (1) All our habits are tied to one another (sleeping time, waking time, timeliness) (2) i underestimate the time taken to finish the tasks (and subsequently overestimate how fast I can do those tasks). Many times, i would target to finish multiple projects in 1 day, which wasnt possible at all.
I began to start analyzing my situation to understand why i couldnt wake up early, through a self-questioning process. I probed into the situation, and asked myself why this was happening to drill abortion down to the root cause. Below is an example of the drilling process: Why cant I wake up early? Why am I tired? Because i didnt have enough sleep. Why didnt I have enough sleep? Because i slept late.
worked tremendously for. Here they are: Advertising. Know the real reason Why your Habit Didnt Stick Previously. Address the root cause of the issue, not the effect. Desperately battling with yourself every morning to wake up at 5:30am is to address the effect. Understanding why you keep failing to wake up at 5:30am is to address the cause. For example, i couldnt wake up early for the longest time ever, and all i kept doing is to keep trying and failing the next day. This would continue on for several months until I finally realized it was just going nowhere.
Im extremely happy to report that nearly all my habits have stuck. My life has become significantly organized. I wake up early, i get to all my appointments early/on time, i get my work done, i meditate, im eating raw, and I sleep on time. Out of the 9 habits, 8 habits stuck, while 1 habit was let go because i realized it wasnt something I wanted to work on for now. Compared to my previous lifestyle, this has been a total 180 degree turnaround. Some people might think this positive slogan change is exclusive to me, that perhaps I have some incredible determination, persistence or discipline to pull this off. I dont want to disappoint, but its not. In fact, truth be told, i consider myself a very undisciplined person. What I do have though, are 6 specific tips that have been critical in enabling my lifestyle change.
Agenda and Resolutions
Not long ago, my daily life was in really bad shape. I was sleeping anywhere between 3am to 6am on average, and on the really bad days I wouldnt sleep at all. Because i slept late, i would wake up late. Subsequently, my day would start off late, which meant I was busy playing catch-up and being late for my appointments. My diet was horrendous i was eating lots of junk food and snacks at night to stay awake. It got worse month after month, and I didnt want to continue. I needed to revamp my lifestyle! I picked out 9 habits I wanted to cultivate for the next 21 days, such as: (1) Sleeping at/before 12am, (2) waking up at 5am, (3) reading a book or listening to a podcast at least once a day, (4) Meditating, (5) being timely for. 6 might be a bit of an overkill for some people, but hey since it was just for 21 days, i thought I might as well try something different for a change.