Thursday, December 13, 2012

How Many Habits Can You Try To Start At Once?

I can still hear Daft Punk's Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger ringing through my head. Yesterday I burned 500 calories on an elliptical. I felt great all day long, I got my notes up to date (I was a day behind,) posted on my blog, and got one of my work assignments in. Finally. The exercise kept me energized well into the early morning. It also made me ravenously hungry.

Thing is I had no motivation to do anything today. The thought drifted through my head that maybe I was trying to change too many things in my life at once. Psychology Today confirmed my suspicions with the article What Went Right? You Focused on One Habit! Ian Newby-Clark goes into how it is almost impossible to try to change too many habits at once. Trying to accomplish all those "should do's" Steven R. Stewart talked about, is something that must be done gradually. Clark also mentions "will-power."

Will-power, I recently learned, is a limited commodity in the human body. How much will power we have has to do with the choices we make during the day. President Obama actually has his wardrobe chosen for him, all blue, so that he doesn't have to make choices in the morning. In a way he's conserving his will power for more important things. I wish I could give you the source of that information, but it has honestly skipped town and taken the nearest train to the forgotten recesses of my brain. I am sure only hypnosis would bring the source back to my mind. The only thing I can remember was that it was on a T.V. show.

The conservation of will power is easier to do with a habit that is firmly in place. For instance, my mind isn't bothered by brushing my teeth. It's something I do every day. Blogging, is becoming the same thing for me. It's been almost a month since I started and I haven't let my self off anytime except for the weekends. Workouts, notes, working hours, and sleeping hours are still a shattered mess right now. This is where I'm spending my will power daily, often switching my focus and never feeling satisfied that I've made a change. I gave up on fixing my sleep patterns awhile ago. They got really messed up in my final year of college, when I was getting an average of three to five hours of sleep a night.

I'd say to make my workouts and working hours have the maximum effect I want, I'd have to alter my sleeping schedule. It's not something I really want to do. However, I used to be an early riser and that was when my mind was at its best. So in order to forge a new path into my future I have to do it one step at a time. However, it doesn't mean I can't make a bit of a sound track for motivation. Technologic by Daft Punk, for a little editing encouragement. (There's nothing like typing to this tune for me. Though I do find the video a bit disturbing.)

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