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3 a.m. is too late

Making a habit of 3 a.m. bedtimes is probably a very bad habit.

(But I'm so much more productive in the wee hours! Anyone else?...)

We aptly name many things “bad habits”. But as ethics, Yin and Yang, the Zodiac sign of Libra, or whatever you choose to believe, tells us … if there's bad, so there must also be good. Balance.

So then what are “good habits”?

Firstly, if you're anything like me, labelling anything as “good” or “bad” breeds unnecessary guilt. If we take part in “bad” habits, we feel guilty. If we miss a day of a “good” habit, we feel guilty. So, how about we rename “good habits” to “routine”?

Routine, when implemented, gives us a structure that makes it difficult to ignore or miss deadlines. Routine is how we can transform “I know I really should be doing 'x' project or task, but I don't have time” into “Now is the time of the day or week I do ‘x’”.

We all have a set of priorities, and it is easy to become consumed by our A list priorities – often the latest big project or company focus. But B and C list priorities are usually the ones which are incremental in keeping things ticking over – up to date web pages; regular communication with staff, existing customers, and networks; answering emails; maintaining current projects.

Examining the above list alone, it becomes clear that routine is necessary. Structure is necessary. Otherwise it is too easy to focus on the big things, and neglect the small but essential tasks.

Make a daily routine out of answering emails from 8:45 – 9 a.m., set aside 20 minutes every day to approve and sign off documents, strategies, and communication, book a monthly board meeting to discuss website and digital updates.

Set a routine. 

This is the only way to form these “good” habits that you wish you were better at. Schedule your time with your deadlines in mind, because rushing to meet them means you are not committing to your best work.

Afford yourself time by making time. (So you don't have to stay awake until 3 a.m!)


Image courtesy of Matthew Henry



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