Do you feel stuck? Do you have goals and ambitions, but no motivation to achieve them?
You’re not alone. Sometimes, we get so caught up in the humdrum of everyday life – get up, go to work, come home, go to sleep, then do it all over again the next day - we lose our spark of inspiration. Our creativity and our drive to chase our dreams is stifled by monotony.
What we need is a way to renew our motivation each day. We can do that by building healthy habits that keep us focused on the finish line and make real progress. All of this is possible to achieve by using a habits planner.
Which Planner Should I Use?
There are billions of planners out there, so your first challenge is picking just the right one. We recommend the JUST Planner. In addition to calendars, it comes with sections specifically designed to help build good habits.
How Do I Build Habits Using A Planner?
Regardless of what planner you decide to use, here are some steps to follow to make your ambitions a reality.
Step 1: Decide What Habits You Want Build
What is it you want to achieve? It can be big or small. It can be one habit or one hundred. Maybe you want to wake up earlier in the morning or write in your journal every day. Once you know exactly what habits you want to form, it is easier to make a plan for them.
Step 2: Write Down The Habit You Want To Build
After you choose the habit you want to cultivate, write it down. This is an action that will make it more real for you and also give you a place to review it every day. If you're using the JUST Planner, there is a section in it called Habit Trackers. You can write your habit down there, or if you're using a different planner you can write it on the days of the calendar that you want to do it. For example, you can write "wake up at 6 AM" on the days you want to wake up at that time to develop the habit of waking up earlier.
Step 3: Decide When To Start Your Habit
This step is important. You need to make a definitive decision on when to start your new habit. You can write this date in your planner on the calendar, or, if you're using the habit tracker, circle the number of the day of the month you want to begin. When you're deciding when to begin your habit, keep in mind factors such as work, school, family and what's going on in your life right now. Decide what is realistic for your circumstances. Using a habits planner is supposed to help you improve your life, not stress you out from unrealistic expectations.
Step 4: Start Your Habit
Now that you have decided on what habit you want to build, written it down and chosen a date to begin, it's time to actually do it. Remember that the first few days are always the hardest. It takes 21 days to form a habit, so keep working at it. If you miss a day, it's okay, don't stress out. Just begin again the next day. This is also a great time to evaluate your habit and see if the expectations you set for yourself are realistic in practice. If they aren't, you can always change the habit, the frequency you do it or what time of the day you do it. Be flexible, but also don't give up!
Step 5: Track Your Habit
The reason we recommend you use a planner to track your habit is because it will visually chart your progress just by you circling or checking a date on the calendar. If you're using the JUST Planner, you can put a check mark on each number corresponding to the day of the month you successfully performed your new habit. In a regular planner, you can scratch the days off the calendar. If you track your habit, you can see how well you're doing or where you might need to improve. You can also evaluate any days you might have missed to determine what happened that day that caused you to miss it.
Step 6: Revaluate Your Habit
Try to keep up your habit for a full month. At the end of the month, revaluate your habit and see if there is anything you need to change. This is also a good time to examine yourself and see if the habit helped you in any way. If you need to make any changes, like the frequency or the time of day you do it, resolve to make them for the next month.
Don't Give Up
The important thing to remember throughout this journey is: don't give up! If you don't do your habit on time, it's okay. Make a promise to yourself to try again tomorrow. If, after trying it for a while, you find you want to change your habit completely, that's alright, too. Just cross it out and write out the new one. With a planner and the right attitude, you CAN build new habits. It starts today, with you.