You know, when I think about last year, I really did build a lot of new habits. I went about it in a way that I hadn't before. I just told myself that every month I was going to build a habit and it was possible. Granted, I think doing 30 day challenges all of last year gave me a lot of practice but still I started somewhere.
However, I will say that on top of that, I did try to give myself a more stringent and strategized way that I approached the type of habits I was building.
In this newsletter, I wanted to tell you all about the habits I built in 2021 to help me live more intentionally. I hope that maybe you can try these habits out in the remaining months of 2022 in order to live a possibly happier, healthier life. I know however that whatever helps me does not help everybody.
First and foremost, a great habit I built was reading every single day in the second half of 2021. I am at 100+ days straight of reading and I’ve found a ton of value from it. I have learned every dag by reading, as I usually read some sort of self-help book before I go to bed.
I know some of you probably would more enjoy fiction and that's totally a good way to go, but I would recommend trying to read every single day to get a little bit of stillness in your routine.
The next thing I would recommend is journaling. I actually have been doing this one for 220+ straight days, and that's the longest habit streak I have going on.
I started this in June of 2021 and it was a really nice habit to get into. Funny enough, I had done the journaling challenge almost a year before that and it took me another year to truly build the habit.
I find it really gets my thoughts out and helps me delegate my thoughts and worries from my mind. If you just let those ideas get out of your head rather than bottling them up you feel a higher level of mental clarity.
Another habit I built in 2021 that helps my mental clarity is meditation. I started doing that in September of 2021 consistently after once again, a year prior, I had done a 30-day challenge. It’s kind of crazy to me that it has given me as much mental clarity as it has, but there is another level of stillness to it in my day that I really enjoy.
Reading, journaling and meditation together give me more stillness than I have had in years. This extra stillness approach lets me decompress throughout the day and allows me to stay off screens before I go to bed.
Funny enough meditation is referred to as intermittent fasting for the mind which I also started doing this year. After 170+ days strong of not eating for 16 hours straight every day I’ve learned the importance of mental discipline. I may not have the time to run as much as I used to but what I can control is whether I eat or not. It also clears my head and I can’t complain about that at all.
Speaking of working out, another thing I recommend is doing daily exercise which I've done every day since I started a pushup challenge in August. That’s been 158 straight and I really enjoy it. It gives me a sense of accomplishment physically, every day and keeps me hyped up as a former college athlete.
So I recommend trying out some sort of daily exercise. It could even be something as small as going for a walk. I'm not recommending you do anything intensive daily as obviously you need to give your body time to recover, but your body needs to be in motion every single day in order to stay healthy.
I know if I didn't work out every day, I'd be pretty stressed out because I'd be cooped up in my house for how many months without doing anything physical.
Those were the five habits I built in 2021 that really helped me grow and feel better physically and mentally. I'm hoping you could maybe implement some of these this year as you move forward on your journey toward building a better life.
Have an awesome week!
❤️ My Weekly Favorites
- Bills vs. Chiefs Divisional Round Highlights | NFL 2021
- This was quite literally the best football game I’ve ever watched. I’m a Chiefs fan and my bias might be showing but... I am still in shock.
- Robert Green on the Value of Objectivity and the Transience of Life - The Daily Stoic Podcast
- This was a great interview on the Daily Stoic podcast.
✍️ Quote of the Week
"I don't believe you have to be better than everybody else. I believe you have to be better than you ever thought you could be." - Ken Venturi