Use Streaks to Form & Break Habits

Early on I noticed creating a streak made things easier.

When it came to habits, I would think less. It was just there. It was nearly automated.

The power is in the streak, the consecutive number of days we’ve done something.

And this is the same whether it’s flossing teeth, meditating or even writing.

The problem is when we break the streak, we tell ourselves it’s just this one time. Then another day goes by, and we tell ourselves we’ll do double the work to catch up. And this goes on and on. Now what you have is a negative streak.

The good news is you get to break that. But you have to distinguish it. You have to think to yourself, I have a negative habit. I’m in the habit of not (fill in the blank).

Sure, looking at the positive is great, it’s better to go toward something than away from it. But when you find yourself in a negative rut. Look at the inverse of what you want to accomplish. That’s what you’re doing at the time. What’s it going to take to change your current state? What’s it going to take to create a positive habit that’s in line with what you want in life?

For instance, if you’re not exercising, you’re in the habit of just that, not exercising. You may have an incredible streak where you haven’t worked out in years. All it takes is one trip to the gym or even just a walk around the block to break this streak.

So when you find yourself having trouble forming a good habit or breaking a streak where you thought you had one, look at the inverse, define the negative habit and break the negative streak. Then flip it and start tracking the positive streak.

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