For over three years I have been using my highly effective daily habit and task journal. I’m going to teach you how to make one too and the best part is, there is absolutely no cost.
For years, I truly believed I couldn’t simultaneously achieve success in different facets of my life. If I was rocking motherhood, my spiritual disciplines suffered. If I focused on exercise and healthy lifestyle, everything else seemed to slip through the cracks. All of this changed three years ago when I stopped believing this lie, learned how to set goals correctly, and created a system to hold me accountable.
The technique I use is a combination of bullet journaling, task lists, a daily planner, and goal check-ins. I tried all of these products on their own. I had a gratitude journal, a prayer notebook, a planner, a bullet journal, etc. There was absolutely no way I could keep up with all those notebooks and journals! So, I created my own system that works for me. It isn’t fancy and it won’t cost you a dime, assuming you have an old notebook lying around. The fact that this doesn’t cost a thing is part of the appeal. With brand new expensive notebooks, I feared ruining them with my unworthy notes and sloppy handwriting – anyone relate? With my approach, there is no guilt – just productivity. Each night, I evaluate the day and create a list of my non-negotiables for the following day. Then, I make a list of everything I need to accomplish in order to be intentional with my time.
In order to explain this whole idea a little better, I made a video tutorial. Feel free to comment below with any questions. If you want to learn more about setting goals, determining your “why” and so much more, check out my book Mind and Body Wellness.
Breaking bad habits can be very challenging. Why is it so much easier to continue doing what we don’t want to do rather than cultivating what we do want in our lives? Habitual patterns form deep grooves in our brain and reinforce neural pathways. In neuroscience, the phrase is often used “neurons that fire together, wire together.” By changing our experiences (our habits), we can literally change our brain. As we create new habits, it is incredibly important that we see the value in those changes. Taking time to appreciate a new habit or experience, helps to cultivate the positive behavior by getting those neurons firing together. Enjoyable experiences have the greatest impact on forming new neural pathways.
Unfortunately, there are several common mistakes that keep us from breaking bad habits.
1. Trying to change too much at once
Often we try to change everything at once and we can’t stay focused. Studies show that if we focus on changing one habit at a time, we have an 80% success rate. However, the success rate drops to 35% when we try to change two behaviors. Trying to change three habits lowers our success to a measly five percent!
2. Unrealistic expectations
Are you trying to replace a bad habit with a new habit that doesn’t fit your season of life? Take your schedule and life circumstances into account.
3. Too vague
Sometimes the problem is simply that our goal is not clear. We haven’t specified exactly what we are trying to change, nor have we considered the steps required to make the change.
4. Focusing on “should” statements
We all know things we “should” do – but what do you REALLY want? Feelings of obligation are not strong motivators to change a habit.
5. No support system
Trying to change is hard. Doing it alone is even harder. Find an accountability partner that you can call, text, or even check in with through social media.
What would you add to this list? Comment below with your thoughts!