Not wanting to break my habit streaks
Ship It Post #
Mar 7, 2022
In a breakout for Write of Passage, someone expressed the challenge of continuing to write and publish their weekly articles (which has become part of their identity), while also having time to devote to connecting with other students in the course. I related to this.
I have a daily habit checklist that includes: pushups, stretching, meditation, journaling, writing a Ship It, flashcard review for Japanese and Chinese, and reading a book. Some of these streaks are in the 500-600 days range.
One of my first cohort-based courses was a habit builder challenge. We learned that the root of any effective habit change is identity. To shift our identity, we recited a creed before each lesson. "I am a Habit Builder..."
I'll always do these habits before going to sleep, even if its a minimum “low bar.” And even if I have to wreck my sleep schedule by staying up late to complete them (because I was either too busy or procrastinated on them during the day).
If I were to prioritize my sleep and skip a few days of doing these habits, it would feel like I’m some kind of failure and not living up to my identity.
Of these habits, writing these Ship Its usually take the longest amount of time and most mental effort. But I have been successfully publishing them daily for 140 days. At times there is a conflict. My pride of being successfully consistent at writing overrules the need for self-care and giving my body the rest it needs.
The issue for me seems to be how I spend my time and manage my attention. If only I could complete my habits in the morning... As soon as I get distracted by emails, social media, news, and then work, I’m not very successful at getting to do my habits until right before bed.