Mondays are productivity days at SimpleProductivity blog.
I’ve done it. Almost everyone I know has done it.
We want to start a new habit. So the first thing we do is go out and buy something. We want to start walking every day. So we go out and buy fancy walking shoes and a pedometer.
Or I decided I wanted to lose weight. So I went to Weight Watchers and bought everything I could – the scale, the books, the snacks, the bracelet, water mugs, you name it. (I’m not knocking WW – just my approach to it).
The problem with buying things to create a habit is that these are external. Behavioral change, in order to stick, has to originate from the inside.
Leo Babuta, an vocal proponent of changing habits, talks about the basics of changing habits in “Zen To Done (ZTD): Forming the 10 Habits . Motivation, which might encompass buying stuff, and rewards are not in the top two of the list. The top two are simply commitment and practice.
Rewarding yourself before you’ve done anything is not going to get you to do anything. After all, you’ve already got the reward, right? Why bother?
Mutual Improvement, by the creators of the habit changing site 43 Things , talks about figuring out what habit to change, and then the specific steps to do it in “The Catch-22 of forming habits”.
If you are thinking about incorporating change into your life, and your fist impulse is to buy something, ask yourself why? Are you trying to get the reward before the effort?
Photo by love janine