I started blogging daily out of desperation. You see, I wanted to be a writer, and improve my writing abilities, but if I’m honest, I just wasn’t doing it. I would have a burst of ideas coming out of my ears one day and then nothing for the rest of the month (or the next month).
I would always have reasons why — my full-time job… my relationships taking up the rest of my time outside of work… lack of motivation… Netflix — but those reasons **cough** excuses **cough** were getting me no closer to my goals.
Around the same time, I came across a quote, attributed to George Bernard Shaw, that read:
“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself”.
This insightful summed up what I was feeling but hadn’t formed the words yet. It also hit me at just the right time and angle for me to be open and let it into my life and inform how I think and act.
I am the one that will care most about my life.
Or put in another way, who else will care more about my life than me?
God, if you believe in a higher power. But not my family, not my friends or coworkers. They might care, and care a lot, but not more than me. Because my life is personal.
So, If I’m not going to go out a create the life that I actually want, who will?
No one. They are too busy dealing with their own (as they should be). Sure others can help, and that help can be life-changing, but I’m still the one who has to decide to initiate it and act on it.
If I want to be something, I need to create it.
We can’t wait for something to happen for us. We need to go out and make it happen.
So I committed to writing everyday. It didn’t have to be long. It didn’t even have to be great (ideally it would, but that wasn’t a prerequisite).
All that I require of myself is to sit down and do it. To put in the work, each day.
To create myself one day at a time.
Habits don’t have to be daily. Weekly could work. Monthly could work too. In fact, sometimes too much of one thing, no matter how positive, can create a negative effect or at the very least diminishing returns. (Working out too much, for example.)
But there’s something magic about daily habits.
Daily habits have a compounding effect.
We normally think of compounding as it relates to money with compound interest. Investing a little bit of money into a retirement fund (such as a ROTH IRA) consistently over time grows that small amount of input into massive output. The earlier, the better.
The same thing works with habits.
(And pretty much everything else that’s time bound…. so everything. 🙂
Investing a small amount of your time and effort each day towards a habit compounds into 10x, 100x or even 1000x the benefits later on. Usually without you even noticing the benefits occurring.
Small actions lead to big change
Each day is about improving as much as you can that day, with what you have to give.
As Theodore Roosevelt has said, “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”
And whatever your day looks like, do it.
On vacation? Do it. Living the longest day of your life? Do it. Sick? Do it. Away from your tools or what you need to do it? Do it in advance. Do it in your mind. Lug your tools with you.
1 day, leads to 2 days, which leads to 10, which leads to 500. One day, you’ll look up and realize how far you come and wonder why you didn’t start sooner.
I’ll be posting more about daily habits. If you want to see all the daily habits I’m tracking and other challenges I’m taking on, I’ve created a dedicated daily habits page.
I’d love to hear about your habits and any daily habits you are starting after reading this. Email me at josh (at) renaissancelife.com
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STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner