Daily Blog #416: We aren’t changing our habits, we are replacing them.

Greetings and Salutations, Blog Readers!

Today I am continuing to discuss the changing of my habits I have embarked on. I am exhausted, and I am sure you are all growing tired of hearing all about how and why I am changing my ways…

But it may also be a pleasant break from me constantly talking about apocalypses, zombies, and video games. If you miss that content, don’t worry, more of it is coming.

Back to today’s topic, discussing the exact changes, and how it isn’t changing, it is replacing.

I have read plenty of books about improving your life, changing your habits, becoming a much higher performing person, all in an effort to do the things I want to do to change my life, so my daily life reflects the life I want to lead. Some of these changes, if you haven’t been following the blog, include getting into better shape, allowing myself to work out frequently and be in good shape. I want to be in good shape for my health, to help me with goals like hiking more, and of course, to be in good shape if the apocalypse were to come.

I have, to achieve this goal, been getting up early. I am fighting years of bad habits I picked up from my parents, who would never in a million years get up to work out, and don’t work out at all. The one time I saw my mom lose weight was with a frankly horrible crash diet, not working out.

I wasn’t raised with good eating habits, with good fitness habits, with smart sleeping habits…I was raised with lots of bad habits which don’t serve my goals. The habits I was raised with is for people who want to do the bare minimum, which is fine if that is what you want, but it is not what I want. I want to be in good shape, I want good health, I want to publish my books, do my job well, keep a decently clean home…

There is not enough time in the day, doubly so if you are doing the bare minimum.

In the many books I have read all about how to do better, how to have better habits, how to achieve more in your day, how to be a high performer, books I needed to read since I did not have the foundation to build on, I learned a few key things about habits, habit making, etc.

One of the best books for that was Atomic Habits, which you have probably heard of. I highly recommend it. In this book, we learn we aren’t changing habits, we are replacing the old ones.

My old habit was to sleep in, my new habit, the habit I am replacing it with, is waking up early and working out. Monday and Tuesday, this wasn’t too hard. Wednesday, it was tricky, today, Thursday, it was nearly impossible. I fought with myself, I pushed myself, I yelled at myself, and after 15 minutes of reminding myself that the last time I didn’t get up to work out, and slept in instead, I felt even worse, and while it did help me bounce back, I hated how I felt. I remembered that I did better resting on the weekend.

“I have to get up” I told myself.

“But sleep feels so good.”

“But sleeping in won’t feel as good as I think it will.”

“Working out will make me feel better…”

I dragged myself out of bed, after fifteen minutes of this talking to myself, and bleary eyed did my morning routine, did some morning stretching and yoga, and got on the cardio bike. 8 miles in 34 minutes, not my best, but not my worst, either.

And I felt better for it. As I type this, I am exhausted. I am tired, my body hurts, and I worry my body is trying to come down with the newest sick that is spreading around. I took some emergen-cee, I am drinking water, took my vitamins, and, yes, I worked out this morning.

Am I depending on coffee a bit? Oh god yes.

Am I starting to notice my peaks and dips in energy through the day? Also yes. I have been using an app to track my sleep and hopefully get better at waking up earlier, and it also informs me of my peaks and dips, and, as my next peak approaches, I feel a bit more awake.

I am REPLACING my bare minimum habits. My sleeping in till the last minute and not working out habit, replaced with my habit of getting up early and working out.

My habit of not tracking my time, and letting my day slip away, replaced with tracking my daily activities, planning things to do during my peak energy times to give my best self to my preferred projects.

My habit of doing the least replaced with doing as much as possible.

My habit of not putting my health first? Replaced with following my plans to get into the best shape possible.

I am changing my old habits, by replacing them with new ones. This morning, when I struggled to get up, I reminded myself: Laying in bed, sleeping until the last minute, is an OLD habit, and we don’t do that anymore. We are replacing that habit with the NEW habit, of getting up early. We are replacing our OLD habit of not prioritizing our health, with our new habit, of making our health a priority.

We replace our bad habits with good ones.

It isn’t easy, replacing bad habits with good ones, fighting against 35 years of bad habits, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth the effort, or that it isn’t worth doing.

It is worth it, and I am glad I am doing it. I have more time, more energy, and my body is starting to feel better, healthier, I am already seeing improvements and changes, my body WANTS to be healthy.

My mind WANTS to write. I have more clarity in my writing than ever before. I have my time managed better than I ever have. I am doing well. It is hard, but I am doing well, and the changes are slowly sticking. I don’t know how long it will take for these good habits to replace these old ones, but I am going to keep working at it, and keep recording it here on the blog, and hopefully after a few weeks or months, I will see my habits changed, or at least, doing my new habits will be easier.

Thanks for reading,

Abbi

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