Why be “extra” when life happens in the “every day”? It’s the small, consistent things we do that add up to big rewards. Here are 5 small, daily things that can change your habits and your life.
Studies by neurobiologists, cognitive psychologists, and others, indicate that up to 95% of human behavior is habitual. This means what you think, what you say, and your overall actions fall into the habit category—the unconscious part of your brain that controls behavior without making the decision.
What’s fascinating about habits it that nearly all of these started as a choice that eventually, with consistency, turned into an unconscious pattern.
Habits don’t always last forever, and it’s here in the tinkering with habits that you can change patterns improve your life rhythms.
Start with small choices that have big rewards, and change your habits for good.
The 1% Rule
Winning at work, life, or in your health isn’t about perfection. In fact, perfection is the very rabbit trail that can derail any good plan. Winning is about executing consistently in the small things like waking up when your alarm clock goes off the first time, committing to the five daily to-do’s on your list, and scheduling social media breaks.
As much as you would like to believe that you can completely overhaul your life and make a 180 change stick, no one changes their habits all at once. It only happens with focus on taking small steps of change to gain a 1% improvement every day that will add up over time.
Don’t let the “every day” slip through the cracks.
As James Clear says,
“The one-percent rule states that over time, most of the rewards in a given field will accumulate to the people, teams and organizations that maintain a one-percent advantage over the alternatives. You don’t need to be twice as good to get twice the results. You just need to be slightly better.”
It’s the little things, done consistently over time that will lead to the most significant change. Here are five small choices you can make to change your habits.
1. Share A Smile
Your brain is hardwired based on your most common emotion. While it’s easy to get in the trap of keeping your head down and eyes focused on a screen, powerful things could change if you kept your head up and made eye contact with the people you encounter by offering a simple smile.
A smile sends positive signals swarming in your brain, leading to more positive emotions throughout the day. Smiling is a positive habit creating positive behaviors.
2. Focus On Just One Thing
We all like to believe we are hardwired to multi-task. But none of us are. Even if we’re slightly good at it, or appear to be rocking it, it catches up and slows us down. It all has to do with context switching in our mind—which burns up energy. So while multitasking may initially sound like you’re being super productive with your time, switching back and forth actually eats up creative flow and productivity.
Instead, block out time in your day so you can give dedicated focus on just one thing at a time, and get it done.
3. Prompt Yourself
Life isn’t about arriving but about enjoying the journey and when you stop growing, you stop living. But instead of being an inspiration, learning something new can feel complicated or overwhelming if you don’t know where to start or don’t have the time to dedicate to it.
The best way to grow is to learn and explore with self-directed prompts. Ask yourself questions. Whether it’s about something you’re interested in learning more about or questions about how you feel, creating daily prompts can be a great way to grow and propel yourself forward.
At the end of each workday, write down one question you want to answer or to explore. Commit to spending 10 minutes the following day exploring how you might achieve this new idea. Repeat this process daily, even making it a staple in your morning routine. You may be surprised at how easy it will become to grow and your new ideas bloom.
4. Get Lost In Something
There is no denying that as a society we are experiencing more pressures than ever. More work. More deadlines. More consequences. And less and less time to let ourselves get lost in our thoughts.
Whether it’s through journaling, diving into a good book, or taking the back route home from work, create space from your to-do list. Take time to sit back and let your mind wander. Get lost in the suspense of a good book. Recharge by stepping away.
Taking a step away adds energy, drive, and a new perspective to the tasks at hand, to work from a place of rest rather than working to rest.
5. Make A Daily Brain Dump
Does your brain ever feel like its swirling about like a mental mixer? The ideas are there, but you’re scared you’ll lose them so you work too hard to keep hold of them while also trying to process the 853 other things battering about in your head.
One of the biggest reliefs you can find in your day, and create focus for the next, is a daily brain dump. Write anything and everything that is going on in your mind. Then, organize or schedule whatever needs to be planned, and let go of the rest.
This simple habit helps you move the rambling rants from your brain and make more room for positive things, to create a more positive flow and plan of action.
Pick Just One Small Thing
It’s the small things that add up to big changes, but it shouldn’t take ALL of the small things to do so.
Pick just one small thing you want to work on and put it into practice. Remember that things done consistently over time create the most significant rewards, becoming the real habit changers. Stop looking for the complete life-transformation. Live in the moment, because it’s here in the “every day” that your best life happens.
Less extra, more every day—that’s our motto for 2020.
What will you do today that will matter tomorrow?
Live In The Every Day
Need help getting rid of the extra to live more in the every day? The Nourished Planner will walk you step-by-step to break down your daily habits to create healthy rhythms and reach all of your life goals.
The goal of making a better life is only as good as the one you choose to create. The Nourished Planner will help you focus on both. The goal, and living a life you enjoy.
If you want to start planning, goal setting, and goal-reaching, check out the Nourished Planner here.
Hashtag #nourishedplanner on Instagram or tag us on Facebook @NourishedPlanner and show how you are using it.