Yeah, yeah, yeah… new year, new you, right?

Every year we have high hopes, but we also know hope is not a strategy so… how about we focus on habits rather than hope.

Here are some new habits I started that have worked… I mean it’s day five of the new year and I’m still going strong so that counts for something right?

1. Before going to sleep I write down my top three accomplishments of the day and the top three accomplishments I will achieve the following day. That gets my brain focused on what I’m doing well and the solutions I’ll need for the following day. (Source: The Gap and the Gain by Dan Sullivan & Dr. Benjamin Hardy)

2. Rather than relying on my phone’s alarm to wake me up, I use Pavlok to track my sleep and get my ass out of bed without pressing a snooze button. To turn off the alarm I have to get out of bed and do five jumping jacks or the wearable device will “zapp” me. That’s right, get up and get moving or electrocute myself. Don’t knock it, it works… also, it’s not really electrocution… it’s harmless.

3. The first 15 minutes at my desk belongs to my Daily Writing Habit. It’s a Google Doc that I add to every morning. I set the timer on my phone for 15 minutes and then I just write what’s on my mind. Sometimes it’s about a client project, sometimes it’s about a business strategy. The topic doesn’t matter because it anchors my day and focuses my mind. I’ve been doing this for three full years and love this habit.

4. Just found a new app called Headway I purchased for a three month trial (so far so good). It is short book summaries organized by category and I can listen or read them. It’s got built in gamification so I get little badges for my daily streaks and the books are chosen for me based on the category I want to learn about. I started with “wellness” and I’m enjoying listening every morning with my breakfast a lot more than I was enjoying watching the “news.”

5. Create an environment conducive to what you want. In the past I’ve struggled to get myself in the mood to do what needed to be done whether that was creating new content for training programs, rehearsing and upcoming keynote or even doing my passion project which is writing and performing stand-up comedy.

On a recent date I observed that I felt romance because of the environment… candles, music, fireplace (I’ll stop there…). It dawned on me that I could get myself in the mood for the things I needed to do in business using the same strategy (minus the fireplace). I revamped my office space so there are areas where I can invoke the mood I need for the task… and I remodeled my basement as a performance space (Now the pic above makes sense. Stay tuned for a pic of the finished space!). Yep, I have a comedy club with a stage, sound system, bistro tables and mic set up ready for me to write and rehearse comedy and keynotes. Now, I’m not suggesting you remodel your home, but what simple shifts can you make to your environment that set the tone for what you intend to accomplish?

I’ll be sharing more ideas in blogs and emails this year. Yeah, you can unsubscribe at anytime, but I hope you build a habit and stick with me as I promise to only write when I have something of value to say and not just because it’s “Tuesday.”

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