2018 is right around the corner and those new yearly goals are starting to stack up.
"I'm going to get in shape this year."
"I'm going to quit eating junk food."
"I'm going to become a morning person!"
"It's time to get focused."
We all go through it. Each and every year, we look at the things we want to improve in ourselves and make lofty goals that are usually unrealistic to accomplish. Setting goals is a great thing, but often, us humans like to set so many that we don't even know where to start. We make a massive run at the local grocery, buy some protein supplements online for the gym, look up a bunch of workout videos on YouTube and start reaching out to hundreds of people on LinkedIn for that dream opportunity.
It's not necessarily a bad thing. Naturally, most of us are always looking to improve. The new year brings new opportunity and there's a completely new vibe in the air.
"It's in the past!"
Yet, I've been challenging myself to think about improvement on a different scale this year and I am starting to like the results.
You see, I've gained a little weight this past year and a half. I'm sure many of us have but mine was starting to become noticeable. And, I didn't feel very good. I was eating poorly, skipping exercise, and finding ways to complain and make excuses about the way I was starting to look. It was tough for me because I've always been an exerciser. I used to work out religiously in high school and college and usually only took one day off during the week. However, I lost myself this past year and a half and I am finally just starting to get back on track.
By taking it one day, and one daily percentage point of improvement at a time.
I got that one from my friend James Altucher
"1% a day makes every habit work. Every."
And, he's right. You're not going to start running 6 miles, bench 185 pounds and do 200 push-ups the first day of your new workout routine. Or, the second day. Or, the third. Most likely, you won't get to that milestone for several weeks or months! Humans are amazing beings but we're not that amazing. Forming good habits is hard work, but this 1% rule has forced me to look at the bigger issue with my weight and health and maintain it on a much smaller scale. 100 push-ups yesterday? Try for 101 the next day. Then, 102. 103. 104. Slowly work your way up instead of stacking everything together, becoming so sore you can't walk, and eventually just giving up on your entire new habit after the first week or two.
We've all been there so please know that you are not alone in the struggle. It is difficult. We all get down on ourselves and listen to those negative voices in our heads from time-to-time but I'm also adding that to my 1% rule in 2018. Listen to one less negative voice tomorrow than I listen to today. Don't even give it the time of day. You know why?
BECAUSE IT DOESN'T DESERVE MY TIME.
Or anyone's for that matter.
So, let's get in on this one together this year. Let's vow to improve 1% each and every single day. 1% more exercise, 1% more time spent working on our craft, 1% more time calling our parents and thanking them, 1% more time putting others needs before our own, 1% better food choices and more.
You choose what fits you best. I'll do the same. We can see where we are in a few months and if we stuck to our word. A little better than scheduling a marathon in January, am I right?