So I’ve had a lot of time to myself in the last couple of months and as a result I’ve had a lot of time to think and reflect. I am not sure what really happened this term but I’ve suddenly found myself wanting to get better in every single aspect of my life.
The first and most apparent change I’ve gone through is developing a reading habit. To read anything and everything. Personally I think that there is no aspect of reading that is bad for you. Every time I finish a book, whether its fiction or non fiction, I feel like I’ve acquired something out of it. This ranges from learning to what really motivates us (Drive – Daniel Pinkman) or to be fascinated by the stories an author can tell (Robert Langdon Series – Dan Brown). However, six books later, I still know that my reading habit is far from great. I’ve set myself a goal to read at least 20 pages a day and I still cannot say I satisfy that goal everyday. However it has become easier and easier, not only to read the daily min, but to find and prioritize the time to read. I can say that some days I can read a good 50 pages without watching the time but some days I look up at the page numbers every 5 to 10 minutes to see how many more pages I need to go to reach that daily minimum. One thing I’ve learned from this process is that through developing this habit of reading, I haven’t necessarily developed more will power to sit through those bad days but rather the habit loop has started form in my mind and that I actually need less willpower to sit through each session.
The Minimalists podcast that I’ve been religiously listening to always talks about living an intentional life and finding a purpose in everything we do. However, the idea of a habit is to make things mindless, this seems kind of contradictory relate one to another right? I think just the opposite. The first interview Dan Harris did on his 10% happier podcast, the interviewee (I forgot her name) said that forming habits is not necessarily a bad thing and that one should learn to be mindfully mindless. I think a good example is that I go to to the gym everyday after work, it’s a habit that I don’t even hesitate to think about (unless I feel like shit, like today). I mean it takes more conscious effort to stop myself from going to the gym than it does to go. However even though I mindless go to the gym everyday, once I get there I really try to focus on my daily workout goals. This includes things like focusing on my deadlift form, adding an extra 5 pounds to my bench or just mind to muscle workouts. This habit loop allows me to spend my daily will power on focusing on my specific workout rather than spending these points on trying to get myself to the gym. I mean we only have so much willpower pp to use every right? (If you don’t get the reference then…sigh, did you even have a child hood?)
I think overall that through developing this reading habit, it will further pour over into the rest of my life and help me develop other good habits (studying ones) which will really benefit me greatly in the future!
I will end this post on the positive effects of my willingness to change and habit building and leave the negative ones for another post.