How to Choose Which Habit to Tackle Next


Jun 01 2016

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How to Choose Which Habit to Tackle Next

Every month I use my Passion Planner to reflect. Actually, I do this every week, and then reflect on the reflections. The last question determines my main habit challenge for the upcoming month:

Name three things you can improve on this upcoming month. What are concrete actions you can take to work towards these improvements?

I stick to one habit, since I find it more effective to focus one one at a time. The funny thing is, when I’m succeeding with one habit, I build momentum and tend to do well on the others as well!

There are a handful of habits that I am constantly rotating:

  • Reading more
  • Eating less sugar
  • Exercising more
  • Journalling more
  • Getting into an Instagram routine
  • and Sticking to my personal budget

I put them all on a sticky note as a reminder.

At the end of the month I ask myself, which of these habits would make the greatest personal impact on my life?

How to Choose Which Habit to Tackle Next

Building the Fitness Habit

For April it was fitness. It was a tricky one to form into a measurable habit, because my goal was to find a routine I could stick to on a regular basis.

I started with the following framework, to be tweaked:

  • Sunday: Rock Climbing
  • Monday: Running
  • Tuesday: Blogilates
  • Wednesday: Running
  • Thursday: Rest/massage
  • Friday: Yoga
  • Saturday: Walking

How did it go?

I ended up sticking with the Sunday climbing promise, and committing to my Friday yoga class and Friday massage. I decided to drop Blogilates, because now that it’s getting warmer and sunnier, I want to be outside to do my exercise. I’m sure I’ll turn back to Cassey in the winter! 

For all the other days, I committed to getting in my 10,000 steps a day, measured on my Pedometer app. I don’t have to go running, but it does help me reach that goal a lot faster, and on certain sunny days I just feel like it!

Was I successful in finding a fitness routine?

In the end, I found my consistent, easy-to-track goal: 10,000 steps a day. I got used to seeing the green bars signaling success, and it got kind of addictive. I have also become more aware of how far I need to go each day to achieve that (Edinburgh residents: it’s two and bit laps around the Meadows!). 

Next month’s challenge: Sugar!

I’ve been battling sugar for a while now. I’ve tried various methods, including the I Quit Sugar book, to no avail. So I’m taking a tiny step rather than going cold turkey this time: No sugar after dinner. I can have as much as I want during the day, but no dessert after dinner. The idea is to tackle my post-meal sweet cravings while still not feeling deprived during the day.

Every time I contemplate quitting sugar, my brain tries to combat it in the funniest ways. WHAT IF THE QUEEN INVITES ME TO AFTERNOON TEA. Calm down, brain.

How I’m prepping for a month of less sugar

I went on a Pukka tea spree, stocking the cupboard with elderberry and other yummy flavours to settle my sweet tooth after dinner.

I’m telling people in advance that I’ll need help saying no to that dessert menu!

I told my friend Eveline about the project, and she asked to join! Of course she was very welcome, and so are you. Let me know if you want to join us for the challenge! I’m trying to think of a hashtag. #sugarfreeaftertea might just defy my frustration for the British calling ‘dinner’ ‘tea’, because it rhymes so nicely … what do you think?


P.S. for inspiration, I’m consulting my own post, How I Went Sugar Free for a Week!

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