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“You need to create a routine. Motivation only gets someone going for a little while, a routine lasts forever. Write down three things you’ll do each day. Start small. Walk, only eat real food, stretch. Mark them off every day, no matter what. After a month, make the goals bigger.” — Arnold Schwarzenegger

I’m a morning person, and do my best work early. For this reason I try to jamb as much as possible into the first couple of hours of my day. The rest of the day usually takes care of itself at that point, but the important but not urgent stuff is already checked off. For me, that means writing, reading in earnest, some form of exercise and a review of my priorities for the day and week.

Some days are upside down, and all the important things you wanted to start with are nagging at you to finish with. It’s very easy to let things slip until tomorrow when you’re tired and ready to turn your brain off for the evening. This is where maintaining streaks becomes the savior. Some things simply cannot slip. Like writing and reading and a nod at fitness and picking up a word or two of French. We are what we repeatedly do, and all that that represents.

There’s nothing more satisfying than following through on the things you promised yourself you’d follow through on. Every day offers us an opportunity to improve or slide backwards. As we reach the evening hours feeling a bit tired and worn, we get to tell that backwards slide, “not today”.

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