I recently read Atomic Habits by James Clear. I highly recommend it. It’s one of the most tangible and actionable (not just theory) books on habits I have read.
One of the tactics he introduces is stacking – a simple, but effective way to layer two or three habits together to increase (and optimize) effectiveness … like doing 20 push-ups immediately after brushing your teeth.
I tried a similar habit routine called 3 Things Every Day.
It was something I introduced into my daily life after I started working out every day. What could I stack on this already powerful habit to help me thrive in my Iron Age?
The concept, as I used it, was like this:
1) Pick the MAIN habit you want to focus on (in my case exercising). This is the one big thing. It is the foundation, your focal point in self-improvement (or whatever you want to call it).
2) What other habit could you add to this – that would support it (like getting up at 5:30am, or eating a healthy dinner, or eliminating alcohol)? The key is that this new habit ties into our main habit and either makes that first habit easier (like getting up early) or enhances it (like eating a healthy dinner).
3) Pick something small (doesn’t have to be related to the main habit) – that done daily, will make a big difference in the long haul (like reading for 15 minutes each night, journaling at least 1 page each morning, or giving someone a compliment every day).
Now here’s they key – commit to the 3 Things Every Day – for a year!
Every day for a year. Not for three months, not five days a week, but every day for a year.
I think this mindset changes everything.
It puts you into this 100% mindset – and will actually make it easier for you (like my previous post – 100% is easy, 95% is hard.). Take the decision making out of it – these are the three things you will do every day. Period.
It’s powerful. It works.
Let me know what you think.