I love building new habits. Also, breaking them. Here are the best ones I started in 2019:
Every morning, I do guided journaling, using the Stoic Routine App. It helps me to reflect, letting off steam and re-focus on what is truly important. I’m practicing this for a full year now, and the benefits are great.
The two week project
I’ve started dividing my work into one or two week, singular projects. Having just one project is a great way to get meaningful work done. During a project, I don’t do anything else for the first 3-6 hours of a work day. Only after that do I take care of random busywork. This has helped me to tackle several things I have been dreading and putting off (some of them for months and years). And like with cleaning the basement, the hardest part is getting started.
Each Friday evening, I take a blank sheet of paper, and make a plan for the weekend. What needs to get done or repaired in the household? What fun things could we do? What special wishes does anyone have? Unstructured weekends have been a major pain point for me, and this small habit fixed it: we clean, we repair, we have fun, we relax. What a great joy to spend weekends like this.
Saying no to inbox zero
I’ve stopped paying so much attention to my inboxes. I still clean them out occasionally, especially when I’m blocked, sick, or otherwise unmotivated. The rest of the time I cherry pick the most important things, and leave the rest. Instead, I focus on the most important tasks at hand and try to do them well. The bottom line is this: When you’re 80 years old, you won’t regret that you haven’t spent more time in your inbox.
Renegotiate my commitments
My task lists have a tendency to be full, and get fuller over time. It’s important to regularly review and renegotiate. Delete things. Move things to Someday/Maybe. Move the timeframe. The same is true for all other commitments: If you feel you lose control or are overwhelmed, then renegotiate. I have become much better at this, and want to improve even more.
What are the best habits that you recently started? Let me know on Twitter.