Tie a new habit to an existing one

“When scheduling a new habit, it helps to tie it to an existing habit.” – Gretchen Rubin

I wanted to get in the habit of writing in my journal every day. I take my mid-day break from work sitting at a table by a window where it’s sunny, relaxing, well-lit, and comfortable. I thought to myself, “What if I tie my daily break with my journaling?” So, as a test, I started leaving my journal out on the table with it open to the next page and an uncapped pen ready to go. I was so surprised. It was almost magical. I’d sit down at the table with my coffee and immediately pick up the pen and start writing.

I do find I have trouble writing in my journal on days off, though, because I don’t have that built-it habit of sitting at the table. But five out of seven days is awesome!

I also tied in keeping a tiny gratitude journal. At the top of every page when I’m getting started, I list three things I’m grateful for. Then I start journaling.

It works for me. 🙂

My journal is just a simple spiral-bound notebook. Nothing fancy. And I don’t set a goal for how much writing to do or what to write about. I usually just write randomly until my break’s over.

I find that I get all sorts of ideas from this simple journaling practice. Writing ideas. Life ideas. Ideas to share with others. It’s been one of the most fruitful habits I’ve developed this year.