I’ve gone through a lot of internal changes since I went nomad five months ago, most of which are thanks to The Power of Habit. It opened my eyes to how habits work and helped me resolve my “”Habit Loop of Death””, which was wreaking havoc on my mental health and productivity.
How habit loops work…
- Cue. A trigger tells your brain to go into automatic mode, and which routine to use.
- Routine. Physical, mental, or emotional behavior that follows the cue.
- Reward. A positive stimulus that tells your brain that the routine works well, and is worth remembering.
So for example, my “Habit Loop of Death” worked liked this…
- Cue. I’d sit down to begin work on a new project or business idea, not know exactly know where to start, so a subconscious fear of failure would set in.
- Routine. Pick up my phone and begin opening and closing apps pointlessly, checking notifications, and generally wasting time.
- Reward. My fear of failure would go away due to my digital distraction and I’d get hit with a bit of dopamine from social media interaction.
- Realize I needed to get something done, so would return to step 1, only to begin this stupid loop all over again.
Minutes, hours, days, years would pass and I’d make hardly any progress on my new business ideas, which would then cue negative self-talk where my ego would tell me how I was never going to accomplish my goals, which would ultimately lead to depression, further decreasing any chance of me getting any work done.
The craziest part of this is that I didn’t even realize this habit existed until I read the book. Once I identified the problem, it was easy to change. I just had to make a few simple changes…
- Hide my phone. I turned my phone off and put it in another room so I couldn’t use it whenever I sat down to work, preventing myself from performing the routine when the cue was triggered. Eventually the desire to use it died off, so now I keep it on me but just don’t look at it until my first big task of the day is done.
- Meditate. I needed to slow my brain down so that I could plan properly instead of jumping to a mindless activity. I began meditating every morning before I would sit down to work. So when I began a new project, I wouldn’t be afraid and try to distract myself, instead I’d just sit there and map out what needed to be done and then do it.
So yeah…5/5 would recommend. The Power of Habit was a gamechanger. Link below for those interested. #veezyreads”