Is it really possible to change one’s life in such a short timeframe?
Well, yes. Just don’t expect a complete overhaul of your life in 30 days or you’ll be terribly disappointed! You can, however, change your life to a certain degree in 30 days. Remember, 1% positive change in a month is still change. Realistic professional athletes aim for less than 1% change in a month and they’re satisfied with it.
So the first step is to define what change(s) are you looking to have in your life. Ask yourself the following questions:
- What do you want to change in your life?
- Why do you want to change it?
- What do you need to do to change it?
- How can you track your progress?
- Who can help you change it?
- What are you willing to risk to change it?
- When can you start to change it?
- Why not now?
That will bring you clarity on what it means for you to change your life.
Breakthroughs don’t change your life. Microhabits do.
Benjamin Hardy compares this concept to compounding interest, and how, given the choice, most people would take $1,000,000 in their bank account right now as opposed to a penny that doubles in value over the course of the month.
What most people don’t realize is that those who take the big payout end up with significantly less money than those who opt for the cent per day. He explains: “The doubling penny actually ends up being $10.7 million dollars. Yet, the majority of the growth happens at the very end, and most people aren’t patient enough for the big return. The “live for the moment” culture of today stops people from investing.”
The point is that if you want to have a completely different life in a year or two, you need to start now, and you need to start small.
The micro-habits below cover most aspects of health, wealth, love and happiness.
When reading the list below, always keep in mind what you want to change. Note the micro-habits you think can help you and do them every day for the next 30 days and beyond. Of course there are some that can’t be done every day or you may miss a day or two. That is completely okay! Get back on track and continue.
Reading uplifting content before going to bed
Don’t let yourself go to bed in a bad mood, or by filling your brain with “crap”. I understand that you need to decompress before going to bed. I completely get that. But what you do before bed affects how you wake up, and the state of mind you’re going to be in for the first part of the day.
Listen to uplifting music, podcasts, and people
My most productive days seem to be when I’m dancing to music on my chair. Great music puts me in flow state. I feel like I can do anything!
Be more responsive
If someone sends a text, answer it when you see it. As often as you are able, respond to important emails as they come in. This will ensure that you aren’t left with a backlog of work that needs to be tended to.
Be less reactive
When you see or hear something that immediately enrages you or upsets you (even if it’s just a negative thought that crops up in your head) before reacting to it and pouring your energy into it, question it. Figure out where it came from, and ask yourself whom your reaction to it would serve. Learning to take that micro-pause between a stimulus and your response will change the way you look at everything.
Keep inspiring quotes near you
Quotes are powerful. One thing I had realized early on when I started writing was that things people highlighted most in my stories were the quotes I put in them. And I get it. People far smarter than me have said far smarter things I have.
Reading at least one good quote a day puts you in the right mood. Keep it on your fridge/desk. Let it be in your face as frequently as possible.
Whereas sifting through TV channels was once the mindless past time of years past, now it’s scrolling through news feeds. Train yourself to limit your “scroll” time each day. You don’t have to delete apps entirely, but you should be mindful that you’re not spending multiple hours a day effectively doing nothing.
Practice saying “no“
Your energy is limited each day. Make sure it is only going toward that you truly care about. You should not feel bad about saying “no” to some things. It is ultimately a means of self-preservation.
Work out, even if just a little
The best months of my life was when I was doing physical activity. I was feeling great in my body. When I’m exercising and seeing even small gains in my weight-loss journey, I feel incredible. Whatever your goals are health-wise, be active, measure every little gain, and keep going.
Keep or make good habits, drop the bad ones
This is the starting point, and most likely the most important one. Habits are strong. We’re creatures of habits. Good or bad. Keep the good ones. Drop the negative or ineffective ones. Make new, better ones.
The hard part is consistency, consistency is key! If you can’t be consistent, add accountability.
Eat one less unhealthy snack.
Don’t worry about trying to completely overhaul your diet and perfect every single thing that crosses your lips. Focus only on foregoing one single unhealthy choice that you’d make on any given day. Just one.
Have monthly goals and track them
How many of us have truly stuck to our New Year resolutions? They’re near-impossible to achieve.
Monthly goals, on the other hand, are excellent. Committing to goals for a month is doable, and leads to building great habits. It’s great to experiment and see what works for you, and what doesn’t.
Make a clear task list
I’ve been disorganized and lost many times. I had a really hard time tracking my progress on the various projects. Not anymore. It doesn’t matter the tool you use as long as your list is clear.
Aim freaking high
Always make your lists bigger than you can chew. We, as humans, like comfort. If we allow ourselves to be comfortable, we end up doing close to nothing. Make your lists big. But make sure the tasks are small and achievable. I have about 15–20 things to do every day. Most are 10 minute-tasks.
If I aim to accomplish 10 tasks. I will. And I will be “satisfied”. Now if I aim to accomplish 20 tasks and complete 15–18 of them, I’ll be pumped. I won’t see time go by and the dopamine rush I’ll get rush for accomplishing so much will strongly contribute to building that momentum up.
Prepare your next day the night before
What I’m proposing you here is to simply make a list of things you want to accomplish for the next day a few hours before bed, and then review it shortly before “calling it a night”. Don’t make it too complex. Just a simple list. It shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes. I usually come up with a list of anywhere between 10–20 things to do.
Here’s what happens when you prepare your next day the night before:
While you sleep, your subconscious is “working on” things you “fed it” before going to bed. When you feed it with things you want to accomplish for the next day, it will “prepare” you for them.
Write for yourself
Writing has been a powerful medium for me to express myself. I never knew I had so much to say. I did it for myself, really.
Yet putting all my thoughts in writing has been a phenomenal way to free my mind and think clearly, ultimately leading to some momentum.
Delegate to people you trust
This is WAY underrated! I thought people who delegated were lazy. There are so many things I am doing that could easily be done by someone either more qualified or with more time doing simpler things.
Don’t stop when it hurts
How do you build muscles? You continue when it starts hurting!
And you know what? That’s how you grow in anything in life. No pain no gain.
If you stop when it’s hard, you just wasted valuable energy. Recognize when you’re in a dip, and then get out of it!
Surround yourself with motivated people
Here’s one of my favourite quote of all times:
You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time withJim Rohn
This is so true.
I seek mentors. I seek positive people. I seek people who get stuff done.
Constantly learn new things
That’s probably contributed the most to the changes in my life.
The future belongs to those who learn more skills and combine them in creative waysRobert Greene
Everything I’m doing today — my “successes”, my “failures” — it’s all because I had decided I wanted to consciously and continuously learn new skills.
Take a well-deserved vacation
It’s hard to brake when your pedal is all the way back. But you know what, sometimes that’s exactly when you need to brake.
You can’t function at peak state when you’re constantly under pressure.
Do good, be grateful
Doing good is so rewarding and gives you such a high. And when someone does good to you, be grateful. Gratefulness is almost as powerful as doing good yourself.
Celebrate The Small Wins
Every time a small event happens where it could be considered a “win”, acknowledge it. Take note of it. Have a “success” journal.
Begin each day asking yourself: “How can I change my life today?”
Get out of the mindset that you have to “get through” the day and get into the mindset that the coming hours are filled with open-ended potential for you to take action that will change your life forever. The only difference is your willingness to see things differently, and your effort in trying to make them better.
Changing your life for the better can seem daunting, but it’s important to remember that you can make a difference by taking small, manageable steps.
By implementing some of these micro habits into your daily routine, you’ll be on your way to a happier and healthier life. So get started today and see how much of a difference these small steps can make.
You’re already one step closer to changing your life.