“We are what we repeatedly do” -Will Durant
I once heard that if you do anything consistently for 30 days it becomes a habit or automatic action in your life. Some research argues it’s actually 21 days, some argues 66 days, and some argue some other magic number, lol. All I know is that for the past 30 plus days that school has been on break, I have not thought about school, homework, or getting to class at 8:30 a.m., and I think I’ve picked up some new habits. I have been waking up late to get to work for 11: 00 a.m., watching enough tv for every student at City Tech, and spending A LOT of time on “social media lane.”
They say old habits are hard to break and new habits are hard to form, so I’ve been doing my own reading and research on how to master forming and breaking habits. So with that said, the truth is I that I didn’t really form new habits because I have had school in the back of my mind this whole time. I mean I have been going to school for so long so it’s obviously a hard habit to break. I even found myself super bored some days wishing for the semester to start.
One of the articles I found that stuck out for me and actually provided realistic guidance on the forming of habits and sticking to them was The 3 R’s of Habit Change: How To Start New Habits That Actually Stick. Right in the beginning of the article, the author James Clear says “What you repeatedly do (i.e. what you spend time thinking about and doing each day) ultimately forms the person you are, the things you believe, and the personality that you portray.”
That makes sense!
Our lives are really just the product of ALL our habits wrapped up in one. It made me realize that there are actually many new habits I would like to form and some I want to drop. One thing that I want to point out is that a habit is not actually a “goal.” There is a big difference. For example the habit you want to form cannot be “to get all A’s this semester” or to “lose weight.” The habit is the activity that you want to take up that could promote your goal.
For example, the habit I want to form is to be in bed by 11 p.m. I am currently on a daily
9 a.m.-8 p.m. schedule, so getting my sleep is a PRIORITY and is really imperative to me being a regular sane person and not a ticking time bomb lol. What I do now is get in bed and then decide “oh hey girl, perfect time to scroll through social media or watch just one more episode” and then I wake up in the morning regretting it all.
The article talks about using “The Three R’s” to create new habits.
Reminder. Routine. Reward.
The reminder keeps you on top of the habit, the routine is the act of actually doing it, and reward is what motivates you to keep up your habit.
I’m going to use the 3 R’s by setting a REMINDER alarm to go to bed at 10:30 p.m. which will give me enough time to wrap up whatever I’m doing. Then initiate the ROUTINE by actually going to bed by 11pm and not getting on my phone. The REWARD will be evident in me feeling better, not feeling sleep deprived and having more energy, and being more productive at my internship, job, and school. This new habit will obviously 100% contribute to my GOAL of being successful without dragging myself to do so!
What habit would you like to take up to create a positive change in your life? Maybe it’s academic, maybe you want to drink water with lunch, exercise for an hour a day, stretch and meditate when you wake up; it can be anything! Definitely moving forward I’m going to try out the 3 R’s system and see how it’s going to benefit me in making the changes I want to and forming new habits that affect me positively.
I challenge you to start your new habit TODAY and together we will embark on a 21- day challenge. I choose 21 because that seems to be the universal minimum lol.
In three weeks, I’m checking in on you to see if your new habit has begun to come naturally to you. I’m so excited!!! The article I shared with you is pretty long, but I say– as pre-work to the challenge– give it a read (or a skim if that works better for you lol) and don’t forget: Reminder, Routine, Reward!!