The Power of Habits
Just a minute before I sat down to write this, I downed (probably in record time) a tall glass of green juice. We’re talking spinach, parsley, cucumber and a hint of apple.
I spent most of my life doing anything and everything in my power to avoid foods that were green. So it’s pretty funny to me that a single serving of this magic juice is probably the equivalent of several weeks’ worth my vegetable intake as a child.
I’m on a mission to transform my physical health and start realizing my full potential in that area of my life.
So I’m working out, eating well and actually taking the required time to preserve my health FIRST.
Because it’s the only time slot I can get since my first choice (10 years ago) is no longer available.
As I develop higher levels of excellence in other areas of my life like business, it’s becoming clear that anything less than excellence in all areas of my life simply won’t do.
That goes for my health.
That goes for my wealth.
That goes for the people I surround myself with.
I used to think that living a life of excellence sounded hard and boring. Like you always had to be “ON” and you could never let up. That certainly doesn’t sound fun and not something that you can sustain for a very long period of time.
Certainly not when you view it that way.
Living life FULLY, on the other hand, carries a very different energy.
When you are doing that, you are disciplined and focused enough to realize your full potential in every area of your life.
That is my goal.
And to reach my goal requires that I develop new habits.
Some days I do that well, and other days (or weeks) I show myself just how much growth I still have to do.
Why Didn’t I Do This a Long Time Ago?
Why did I wait so long to realize that pursuing excellence in every area of my isn’t a boring way to go through life but really the only way to live life fully?
I could probably come up with a few lame sounding excuses about why I didn’t realize this years ago. My first choice would probably be that I thought having “daily habits” wouldn’t provide me with the spontaneity I needed to not be bored.
I’m a musician/artist type of person. I don’t do well with authority or schedules or anything where I’m not in control to act in the moment. So the idea of “locking” myself into a schedule (even if it is my own) just isn’t that appealing.
See, I told you my excuse would be lame.
So here’s the truth:
The only real reason I haven’t concentrated on my health, insisted on excellence in every area of my life, and developed the habits required to achieve it is:
Because I didn’t think I was worth it.
The fact is, I’ve been living my life for years making other people’s priorities my priorities. When you write it out in black and white like this, it sounds like a pretty weak way to go through life.
That’s because it is.
You live like that long enough, in need of outside validation that much, and you end up losing sight of exactly what it is that you want in your life.
You can’t really answer the question, “What do I want?” because you’ve allowed your voice to be drowned out by the voices of others.
That used to be me. Thankfully, it is changing very quickly. I’m starting to develop habits based on what I want to do – based on how I want to live my life.
I was raised to believe this “do what’s best for me” idea is a selfish way to live. You could say I’ve been cured, because now I know the truth:
Living life “looking out for yourself…” is really the only way to go. First, no one else is looking out for you, so if you don’t do it, you abdicate your primary responsibility in this world.
Second, once you start to live this way, you realize that the best thing you can do for your own self-interest is to concentrate on improving the well-being of others!
What some call “selfish” quickly becomes a way of life focused on helping other people.
So back to the creation of new habits…
This habit thing is 100% applicable to business of course. Let’s take working with clients as an example.
- If you don’t have enough clients, that’s because you’ve developed the habit of NOT doing enough to generate the volume you need.
- If your clients pay you late, that’s because you’ve developed the habit of accepting that kind of treatment.
- If you are working with clients who do not appreciate your contribution, that’s because you’ve developed the habit of BEING OK with clients like that.
See how this works?
Your habits create your world.
There is nothing hard or boring about reaching your full potential in every area of life.
It’s just that we’ve been brainwashed to believe that’s a difficult thing to do.
It’s not. It just takes some focus to create new habits.
That’s what I’m working on… are you?[Ed. Note: Jason Leister is an internet entrepreneur, direct response copywriter and editor of “The Client Letter,“ the daily e-letter from ClientsSuck.nett, where he helps independent professionals create success. You can contact him via his website at JasonLeister.com.]