I recently read an article by Jim Rohn that reminded me how subtly and sneakily failure might stalk us in our day-to-day lives. It's the smallest daily decisions that will ultimately make or break us.
Some examples of "minor" habits that make or break your life over the longterm, according to Rohn:
- Eating the wrong foods for the joy of the moment
- Smoking too much
- Drinking too much
- Not reading a single book over a 3 month period
- Making yet another (seemingly minor) poor decision
- Wasting yet another hour
With each of these nothing drastic usually happens after a few weeks, or even a few months or years. They feel good in the moment, and don't have immediate consequences. The rest of your life might seem to be going great, yet your daily habits (what you do, and what you don't do) may steadily plant the seeds for future failure or disaster if you're not careful (that failure may be personal, physical, professional, and/or financial).
I love the way that Rohn describes the antidote to this: "A few simple disciplines, practiced every day."
Here are some simple disciplines I'd like to do every weekday (some I already do, some I'd like to do):
- Get 8-9 hours sleep a night, up by 8 am
- Pray and read the Bible every morning
- Blog or do some kind of original writing
- Dance - rehearse my flamenco, do the New York City ballet workout DVD or take a class
- Do something that is a wise choice financially
- Read something that increases my knowledge or inspires me to live well
Some things I'd like to stop doing:
- Staying up too late
- Wasting time online
- Impulsive spending rationalized by "I deserve it because..."
- Goofing off while "working" that significantly decreases productivity
- Checking email instead of focusing on critical major tasks
What would you like to turn into a daily habit? What daily habits would you like to get rid of?