You are the sum of your habits

Today I want to talk a little bit about habits with you. As it is still the beginning of the year you may have started with some new years resolutions, have you? If yes, hit reply and tell me how it is going!

I also have one! Ok, not really a new years resolution, but I am challenging myself this month with not drinking any alcohol. In my day to day life it's not really a challenge, it's only when a beer lover goes to Prague in the czech republic where every second building is a tempting beer bar or pub.

But I said I won't drink anything, so I stick to it; no alcohol.

Habits are not always something you have to add to your life, habits are also something you can get rid off in your life. Things that you are doing every day and you know that they are not good for you.

Here something that I observed in a mall in Prague, that fits perfectly:

I am sitting in a mall in Prague, sipping a coffee and watching people.
There is this guy at a sandwich stand, not that much hair on his head, overweight, seems to be tired. He seems to know the cashier. So he's probably going there every day, maybe after work, maybe in his lunch break. The sandwich doesn't look healthy.

Probably he doesn't notice it, but what he is doing there is a habit. Not a good one. This habit is part of his life. It is defining him and his health. Eating junk food, day in, day out.

Your day is defined by habits, habits are what defines you and your life. The sum of your habits is your so-called lifestyle.

Tomorrow is Monday, take a piece of paper or open a note on your phone and write down what you are doing all day. Like the following:

  • waking up, making coffee, smoking
  • showering
  • leaving house and grabbing some breakfast + coffee at Starbucks
  • going to work, chatting with colleagues
  • reading emails till lunch
  • ...
  • working...
  • going home
  • gym
  • tv

Ok, have everything written down?

Now go over your list. Which of these talks are you doing every day, maybe even at the same time? Probably a lot of them.

You are doing the unconcious for quite some time I guess, without even thinking about them. For example, if you are getting a breakfast at Starbucks single morning, you are doing two things:

  • wasting money for an overpized coffee
  • stuffing empty worthless calories in your body

Everything that took you identified as a habit on your list, which usally is about 60 to 80 percent, is defining you as a person and says a lot about you.

Now take a new piece of paper and seperate the habits in good and bad. Let's stick with the Starbucks breakfast example. That's a bad one, no discussion here.

Instead of stuffing that worthless calories in your mouth each morning, search the internet for a quick morning recipe that you like with oats and fruits. But that's up to you, what you like. Everything is better than the stuff they sell there.

And a coffee for at least 4 dollars, seriously? After two days not buying that, you can afford half a kilogram of coffee plus a french press. And you won't believe how satisfying it is to make your own fresh coffee in the morning.

Now? Go through every habit and instantly replace them? NO - DON'T DO THAT!!!

Replacing your first bad habit is a great thing. Do that for a while, science says for at least 21 days. I say, when you don't think about it anymore and do it like you have never done it different before.

And then go to the next one. If you need any help there, contact me, I am happy to help.

Daniel Hauck

Daniel Hauck