Habit Junkie: The Secret to Sustainable Change and Happiness
My name is Elaine and I am an addict.
I have a new drug, called HABIT, and I can’t get enough of it.
I always want a fix because I AM CHANGING MY LIFE.
I’m living in a different sphere, man.
My friends have even told me that my vibration has risen.
(Cue: “Let the Sun Shine In)
I love this new drug so much I am now a pusher.
And I want to push it on you so that you, too, can experience the high.
My daily Habit High means …
I wake up every morning with a purpose
I delight in spending 1 intentional hour doing things that made me feel great
I live from a place of more gratitude and joy than ever before
I go to bed every night content and looking forward to getting up tomorrow.
This shit is amazing!
And you can have it, too.
Here’s how it all went down.
I sit at my lucite deco vanity in my teal bedroom putting on makeup. I tune into to Ali Brown’s Glambition podcast.
She’s interviewing author Gretchen Rubin about her new book. Gretchen got curious about why some people stick to habits and some don’t. So, she wrote Better Than Before: What I Learned About Making and Breaking Habits–to Sleep More, Quit Sugar, Procrastinate Less, and Generally Build a Happier Life.
Sound boring? I am hooked.
According to Gretchen, I am a Questioner (meaning I will only do something if it makes sense to me … ah, yeah, that’s me). I am also an Abstainer (meaning I’m better off not buying the ice cream than pretending I can eat just one spoonful … totally me).
She claims that knowing this about myself, along with many other aspects of who I am, will go a long way toward following through on what I want to do.
I buy the book and restart a morning practice.
Jump ahead a few months, and my morning practice is a guilty memory.
I finally buy The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (TMM) by Hal Elrod. It’s been in my Amazon Wish List for ages.
Woo, here we go.
I commit to devoting 10 minutes each morning to six different activities (meditate, read, journal, affirmations, visualization, movement). That means I have to wake up earlier. Hal suggests trying it for 30 days to see how your life changes.
In the book, he incorporates mindset (imagine me, a mindset coach, appreciating that) into sustaining a practice habit, and common sense tips that set you up for success.
His approach is so practical, it all makes sense. To me, the Questioner.
Day One: I get out of bed at 6am to turn off the alarm on my iPhone, which I left on my vanity like Hal suggested. (Yep, having to get out of bed to turn off the alarm is helpful.
About an hour later, I’m hooked.
I don’t need a 30-day test period.
My favorite activity is reading. When I have time I go for longer than 10 minutes.
And, I’m finally starting to exercise again. Ten minutes is better than zero minutes!
Starting to feel that first-ever habit high coming on, I buy Gretchen Rubin’s Better Than Before: A Day-by-Day Journal so I can monitor my progress.
I love checking off my habit accomplishments every night in the weekly grid in my journal. I include that as part of my (shorter) evening practice.
I just started Week 5 in my BTB Journal and I already added these new habits into my life …
- The Miracle Morning practice
- Getting up at 6am several times a week to do TMM (other days, I can sleep in and still have time to do it)
- Doing the 7-Minute Workout several times a week
- Miracle Evening practice
- Getting ready for bed around 10pm every night (so that I have time for my practice and can get up early for TMM)
- Oil pulling (which I’ve now added into TMM)
- Listening to inspiring podcasts when I’m getting ready, putting on makeup, going into the city
- Using a standing desk I rigged up with my kitty Buddha’s cat scratcher
- Standing on one foot when I brush my teeth to increase balance (thanks for that one Gretchen)
- Not buying ice cream anymore (yes, not doing something can be a habit)
- Not buying quiche (I get my groceries delivered from Fresh Direct and they have an amazing Quiche, loaded with cheese, I’d gotten hooked on)
- Not buying Fresh Direct handmade gourmet frozen pizza (although I may allow myself a thin crust, portobello and pesto pie once in awhile)
- Making lemonade – seeing the opportunity in everything instead of complaining and worrying
This week, I added in a new business habit. Using my tricked-out, not-so-glamorous, cat-scratcher standing desk.
Before Sunday rolls around, I’m already thinking about what new habits I want to add for the upcoming week. I have a long list, like regular decluttering and cooking, I plan to drip into my routine over time.
That’s one of the beauties of this process. It’s one step at a time, little by little, subtle changes, which cumulatively, transform your life.
I’m in my zone here, can ya tell?
I was already a systems freak (and I have a new mini-course on that coming out soon to help you run your business stress-free).
Now, I have married Hal’s daily miracle practice and Gretchen’s habit genius to create a system for my life, too.
I know I couldn’t make these changes before I found my new habit drug.
So, here we are, the pusher and the interested party, in the haze of a dark street corner.
Ahead of us, is a beautiful white light, is the new happier you on a habit high.
Do you want to go on this trip with me?
I’d love to hear from you. Please share below what habits you’d love to start practicing, challenges you have around habits as well as tips and successes. And if you dive into the books, please let me know how your life changes with your new habits.