2016 Theme & habit busting

Saturday 2nd January 2016

Day 2 of 30 of the #InfinitePossibilitiesProject (click here for previous days)

Todays task is to “Get a theme for 2016” and its been really tricky to get it down to just a few words but here’s what I’m going to go for, which of course ties in nicely with yesterdays 5 goals:

“Happy and Free”

OK so this seems like not enough detail for a decent blog, so this gives me a chance to combine the last two “Sunrise Run” posts that I was going to post, but never got around to posting…

So a couple of days ago I was listening to the audio of ‘You in a Year’ program and Richard Fenton was talking about habits and he had some really good concepts and metaphors. As many of us will currently be trying to stick to new years resolutions, I thought this would be a good topic of the day! We all know that most people tend not to stick at the resolutions that we make and Mike Dooley was talking yesterday in the #InfinitePossibilitiesProject  that goals for the year are better than resolutions for exactly these reasons.

However, we all have habits that are not helping to move us in the direction we want and equally we have habits that we would like to create in order to help us move towards our goals. The big problem is how to stick at the ‘good’ habits and stop doing the ‘bad’ habits. Richard points out that the problem is that good habits typically have a long term reward associated, whereas the bad habits have a short term benefit. So we are far too easily swayed by the short term gains of the ‘bad’ habit. The trick is to make sure that we focus really hard on the longer term benefits of the good habits and/or the negative results of the bad habits.

Furthermore we need to ensure that we replace a bad habit with a good habit, as will power is usually not enough to achieve the desired result! Finally we of course have to decide that we are happy to let go of the bad habit, because as have have just discussed there is usually a short term good feeling that results from the bad habit, and if we are not willing to give up that short term good feeling then, we probably wont.

There are two well known quotes the cover this situation Henry Ford said: “Whether you believe you can do a thing or not, you are right.” and of course the currently topical Yoda (Star Wars) said: “Do or do not there is no try“. I never really understood this “there is not try” thing, until a friend of mine Gemma Bailey (peoplebuilding.co.uk) said to me: If you put a pencil on a table and then “try” to pick it up what do you do? Either you do pick it up or you don’t, it is not possible to do anything else!

Finally going back to Richard Fenton who told a great story about how if you have a hot air balloon and you have it tethered to the ground, it does not matter how much hot air you push into the balloon, it will not take off until you let go of the thing that is holding it back.

The sooner you let go of the things that are holding you back, the faster you will be able to fly.