Atomic Habits

I’ve got a long history of pursuing audacious goals that eventually crash and burn either immediately after accomplishing them or somewhere along the road to getting there.  I’ve rowed a million meters in support of a friend, and as soon as I’d accomplished it I walked away from the erg for months.  I’ve lost 30 pounds and was literally within five pounds of my perceived ideal weight of 225 when I just stopped pursuing it.  I’ve aimed at 10x my quota attainment for years, and inevitably scratch and claw to meet quota, let alone 10x it.  I set a goal of doing 20 burpees a day for the rest of my days, and injured myself after increasing the reps to 50 burpees per day and not listening to my body when it started breaking down.

“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” – Norman Vincent Peale

Such is the life of the big dreamer.  I’ll still pursue bigger goals for work and fitness.  You need to have bigger goals to inspire you after all.  But in aiming for the moon, I’ve ignored the other advice that I’ve heard over and over.  Steady, incremental improvement ultimately wins the day.

“Slow and steady wins the race.” – Aesop, The Tortoise and the Hare

Your audacious life goals are fabulous. We’re proud of you for having them. But it’s possible that those goals are designed to distract you from the thing that’s really frightening you—the shift in daily habits that would mean a re–invention of how you see yourself. – Seth Godin

With that in mind, as we run smack dab into another year of bullshit resolutions, I’m taking a different tack as we round the corner into 2019.  Small, “atomic habits”, inspired by a free ebook with the same name by James Clear.  Overall this has worked for me with a few things, like writing this blog.  I don’t do it every day, but I’ll aim to become more consistent.  So here goes:
  1. 10 burpees per day.  Not 11 or 20 or 50.  Just do 10 and re-establish the routine.
  2. Minimum 5K per day walking.  Aim for 10K.
  3. One call per workday to a high gain contact.
  4. Write something every day and post it in the blog.  Even an interesting quote someone else said is better than nothing.
  5. Do at least 3 of these before you check social media.
Easy right?  That’s the point.  So easy you don’t have an excuse not to do it.  So here we go.  In fact, I’ve already knocked off two of these today.  So I guess I’m off to a good start.