One of the hardest types of habits we can do daily are the ones that are beneficial when we don’t do them.
For example, how many consecutive days can you go without eating ice cream? Or—more generally—how many days can you go without sugar?
Every day you don’t do it, you get another day under your belt. As you keep it up, you keep counting up. And if you miss a day, you write down your top score and start again.
I’m sure there’s a better name for these than “Null” habits, but I can’t think of anything at the moment. Anti? Negative? Break Habits? Sober Habits? Leave a comment if you have a better idea.
The Less app is a perfect example of how this can work in practice. Less helps you keep track of how many drinks you have in a week and whether or not you are sticking to that limit. I don’t have a problem with drinks (I enjoy drinking, but my neck pain gets worse so I’ve got an unfortunate/fortunate built-in limiter). But I’ve heard some great success stories with people who use the app.
The goal with null habits is to be mindful of our weaknesses and therefore doing them less. The habitualness is what makes a bad habit bad. One tub of ice cream isn’t going to make you unhealthy. But if you make it a habit it’s going to catch up to you eventually (I’m talking to myself too).
STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1301