I’ve had thousands of good intentions, a few of those ideas morphed into some kind of action, and most of them have run their course in due time. However, in a few cases, those good ideas have grown into full-fledged habits.

  • For instance, I’ve journaled daily since July 27, 2010.
  • I’ve eaten a healthy breakfast of rolled oats almost daily since about 2009.
  • I walk each morning. (It’s an old man activity, but my joints are grateful.)
  • My wife & I have the exact same bedtime routine with each of our children. That started when Ellie (16) was four or five.

There are a few common reasons those habits stuck:

  1. I added them either to the beginning or end of my day, which means I do them without having too many other distractions.
  2. I have made them easy to maintain by keeping whatever is needed directly in my path. So my journal is beside my bed. My walking clothes are easy to snag.
  3. I’ve kept the expectation low for each, so I don’t feel overwhelmed with the task. For instance, my journaling is not super interesting, but it occasionally is, and that’s ok.