Jerry Seinfeld is attributed with popularizing the “don’t break the chain” method of developing habits/stopping procrastination/personal motivation. He denies doing or inventing this. (Choose your own reference.) No matter, his name is attached and people are marking calendars. Me too, kinda.
So what is this? There’s something you want to do, to get better at. You want to do this whatever every day. Get a wall calendar. On the days you do it, mark the day with a red X. After a few days you’ll be motivated to keep growing that chain of Xs. That’s how it was described to me.
Therefore my (only) resolution for 2018 is to track ten activities I wish to develop into daily habits.
At the start of 2017 there were eight daily habits I wanted to develop. I adapted the practice. In a sketchbook journal I ruled out a grid on the last page, fitting a full month to the page. On days the activity was performed, an X was entered. Of the eight, four have become daily habits. Two are more than once a week habits. Two still need attention.
It worked well. So my only resolution for 2018 is to track the ten activities I’ve identified as desirable habits to strengthen. I am not resolving, for example, to exercise each day. I am resolving to note every day whether or not I did exercise.
A daily review of “did I …” is a motivator to do. Especially on days when most of the items merit a check mark. There’s an impulse to “do them all.” Tracking induces action.
This photo shows the tracking sheet for part of last February. Yes, the third from the right needs some attention. It’s on this year’s list.