Well, it was somebody else who said it first:
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.
Habits are at the heart of everything. Not only at the heart of your actions – I do mean at the heart of everything.
Businesses, organizations, social movements, cultures and societies.
Record labels, DJs, clubs, music producers, your fans and your haters.
On a personal level your habits control the way you conduct your life. It depends on your habits what you ultimately achieve and become, or don’t.
Isn’t it plausible then that in order to become good at say, making music, it would be beneficial to try to understand a little bit about how habits work and how you can work with them?
I most definitely think so.
I wholeheartedly agree with one of my favorite writers, Charles Duhigg, who argues that establishing a proper understanding of habits reveals:
- That habits can be changed.
- The most effective ways to change them.
I wanted to wake you up to thinking about the importance habits play in your daily life.
Do you have some habits that are standing in the way of your personal productivity?
What new habits could you establish to help you on your journey?
Here are a few habits I have created which have been helpful for me:
- Going to bed in time (9-11pm) / waking up early (5-7am).
- Dedicating a set time every day to focus on my work and nothing else.
- Switching off WiFi on my laptop when I start working.
- Taking regular breaks from work to stretch out, breathe, exercise and open up my body.
- Using and reviewing a time/task management system regularly.
- Reviewing my goals and progress regularly.
They are simple habits, but become extremely powerful when followed through, day by day.
Trying to change too many habits at once is not a good idea. Most of us can’t handle that and eventually end up falling back to our old ways. Your chances of succeeding and making a permanent habit change are much better if you tackle habit change methodically, one thing at a time. Therefore I wanted to challenge you to, right now, ask yourself the question:
What is the one habit you can start working on – starting from today?
To learn more about the mechanics of habits and how you can shape yours, check out “Smart Productivity for Musicians”.
We begin the Smart Productivity journey today with a lesson about habits. Because that is the foundation everything else in our lives is built on.
Let me finish this post with another quote.
…change is a process that never fully concludes. But that doesn’t mean it can’t occur.
– Charles Duhigg