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How to Get Back on Track: 7 Ways to Bounce Back After Slipping Up

Schedule Your Habits

Schedule your habits by giving them a specific space in your daily waking hours. You can put it in your calendar, or link it to your current behavior patterns. 

Create a system around your existing life to incorporate the new habit.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

How to Get Back on Track: 7 Ways to Bounce Back After Slipping Up

How to Get Back on Track: 7 Ways to Bounce Back After Slipping Up

https://jamesclear.com/get-back-on-track

jamesclear.com

8

Key Ideas

Failure Is Inevitable

Most of us fail in our endeavors at some point in our lives, whether it's a New Year's resolution or a health goal you are working on. These setbacks make us human, not a failure.

Our willpower and motivation are not what makes us succeed, but our dusting ourselves up and getting back in the game.

Schedule Your Habits

Schedule your habits by giving them a specific space in your daily waking hours. You can put it in your calendar, or link it to your current behavior patterns. 

Create a system around your existing life to incorporate the new habit.

Stick to Your Schedule

Even doing something small towards your goal can help build a daily routine.

Example: Instead of skipping the morning jog entirely due to lack of time, one can jog for a few minutes.

A Familiar Face

Having a person overlooking you and noting your progress, like a friend, teammate or coach can work wonders on your daily motivation.

Having a familiar face around you can be reason enough to show up daily.

What You Can Control

Focusing on what we have, what the positive side is, and what opportunity arises out of the current situation, is the answer to sticking with our goals.

Instead of excuses, one can find ways to progress, maybe taking a different approach.

Something is Better Than Nothing

Less than perfect is still beneficial. Something is better than nothing.

90 % of our results will hinge on us sticking to the fundamentals.

Design Your Surroundings

We normally think we need more motivation and willpower to succeed. But motivation is inconsistent and fickle, and you cannot rely on it daily. You would need to hack your environment, and design the surroundings around you to facilitate progress towards the goals.

Example: If your goal is to floss every night, keeping it near your toothbrush helps you do it more than just deciding to do it.

Care For Your Goals

If the habits that you are trying to inculcate in you are dear to you, you won't need much motivation or willpower.

Setting goals related to what we care for provides us with the best use of our limited energy and it gives us a bigger probability to succeed.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Dwight Eisenhower
“Plans are nothing; planning is everything.”
Dwight Eisenhower
Woody Allen
Woody Allen

“Eighty percent of success is showing up.”

Don’t Resist

When everything is going right, you’re going with the flow. When everything is not going right, you’re trying to go against it.

So instead of feeling frustrated, choose to take it easy. Have that ice cream. Sleep in. Don’t work out.  Eventually, you’ll want to get back to your productive routines.

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Avoid the "all or nothing" mindset

Exercise doesn't have to be complicated. Doing something is better than doing nothing. Don't let optimal be the enemy of good enough. Do what you can do consistently and worry about o...

Wellness is a personal science

Accept advice, but remember you're in this for you—no one else, and you're the only one who'll know what really works. Having an abundance of options isn't a bad thing, but remember who you're in this for.

Whatever you do, enjoy it

Choose something rewarding enough to make you feel good about doing it. If you're having a good time, mistakes feel like learning experiences and challenges to be overcome, not throw-up-your-hands-and-give-up moments.

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Focus On Keystone Habits

Keystone habits lead to the development of multiple good habits. 

Exercise is a good example of this. Once you start to change your exercise habits, it sets off a chain reaction t...

Use “Minimum Viable Effort”

Focus on baby steps. The key to new good habits is to do the minimum and be consistent.

Do not be ambitious at the beginning. That leads to failure. Consistency is what you’re shooting for, so make the hurdle as low as possible.

Make A Plan

Thinking about the details makes you more likely to follow through. 

Just writing down your plan also makes a big difference in effectively committing to your goals.

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Eating Habits During Lockdown

Many of us have let go of our diet plans in the lockdown, due to the constant sitting at home, with access to the kitchen pantry, the fridge, and for some, the liquor cabinet.

The ongo...

The Importance Of Structure

Life has lost a lot of its routine and structure, with personal and work times being blurred. It is imperative to reintroduce that structure to get our habits back on track, with regular, on-schedule exercise, and normal eating habits.

Having a specific time for lunch makes us less prone to indulge in snacking just prior to that while having a specific place for eating provides us with a sense of normalcy.

Home-cooked Meals

It’s not a revelation, but a friendly reminder that home-cooked food is healthier than the frozen pizza bought from the grocery store.

A good, home-cooked meal is a joy to cook and eat, and provides us more than just nutrients. The social time with your close family will act as a break from your work-from-home routine.

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Consistency matters more than frequency

We usually make effort unsustainable. For example:

  • We work out like crazy for a few days (usually at the beginning of the year) and never go back to the gym.
  • We try to med...
Identity-based Habits
To build the identity of the person you want to become, ask yourself what the behavior of a person who has the habit you want to develop is. For example:
  • What is the behavior a person who is in shape? They go to the gym consistently
  • What is the behavior of a prolific writer? They crack open a notebook every day.
Raise Your Level of Intensity Gradually
When something becomes effortless, raise the level of intensity, to the point where you can get there without too much resistance, but it’s still somewhat challenging. To put it more concisely, bend but don’t break.

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Integrating journaling in your daily life
Integrating journaling in your daily life

The biggest mistake is to journal only in reaction to something that is going on, instead of letting it be part of a system.

Make writing in your personal journal part of your every...

Benefits of a journal
  • When you keep a journal, you can look back on important life events to read about how you felt at the time. You may also be able to learn from these past experiences.
  • Writing about traumatic events results in physical and psychological health benefits. Journaling focuses on understanding traumatic events and makes people see these events with an extra level of clarity.
Schedule journaling time

Start your daily journal off on the right foot by scheduling your writing for a set time every day.

  • If you find your mind is most active in the morning, wake up 15 to 20 minutes earlier and jot down your thoughts then.
  • If you prefer to record everything after the day is over, then make it an evening activity before you go to bed.

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Know your brain

Our response to difficult conversations is neurologically the same response to fear: the fight, flight, or freeze response.

When you feel that internal escalation,&n...

Assume good intentions

When we are in conflict, our view of the other person becomes so narrow that we do not see them as a fleshed-out person. 

Try to assume that the other person is acting in good faith. That baseline assumption can get you through plenty of instances of misplaced tone and timing.  

Body language speaks volumes

Good communication is a full-body experience. It’s how we breathe. It’s our tone. It’s our gestures. 

Cultivate habits like keeping an open expression, avoid defaulting to crossed arms, and taking deep breaths to help change the tenor of an interaction.

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Plan the Rest of Your Day

When you don't feel like working on your tasks, take a few moments to plan your day.

Even if you do it as a form of procrastination, to postpone doing the actual work, it will help you...

Smaller Manageable Parts

Break the project you don't want to start into smaller pieces.

Breaking it down into small tasks and adding those to your to-do list isn't exactly fun, but it is less overwhelming than working. And it's also useful: When you finally do get around to starting, you've got a strategy.

Clean Something

Clean something every time you don't want to get started on a work project. Don't listen to a podcast or turn on the radio. Just clean. Make it as boring as possible, so that your mind wanders.

This does two things: it delays actually working on your project and it gives you time to think, possibly generating ideas that will come in handy whenever you get back to the project you're trying to put off. 

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Ignore your inbox when you wake up

Responding to emails as soon as you receive a notification gives others the impression that you’re at their beck and call. It also prevents you from reflecting on your own priorities for...

Empty your inbox daily
  • Do. If the email is actionable and takes under two minutes, then do the task ASAP.
  • Delegate. Forward the right tasks to the right people.
  • Defer. Reply to the message at a better time.
  • Delete emails that are not important or that you can delegate. 
  • File. Add messages that contain information you will need to your archives.
Stop CC’ing everyone

To avoid filling the email box of staff members, only CC the relevant parties. Ask your team to respond to you individually instead of using the reply-to-all button.

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Tie the task to a larger goal

... you are passionate about.

Thinking about how wonderful it will feel to get that promotion we crave will help motivate us if we can see doing a great job on the report as a stepping...

Start with the easiest part

The most difficult step in completing a task is getting started. 

Starting at the easiest part takes less emotional resistance, and once we get started, we tend to get on a roll, which gives us the momentum to keep going.

Break it down

The task will seem less daunting if we tell ourselves that we are going to only spend five minutes working on it. 

We’ll find ourselves continuing to work past the committed time that we told ourselves.

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