What's the secret to success? "Do the thing you hate most first," is the best answer I've heard in a long time. You hear that phrase, and you just know it's a great idea. A great habit to have embedded in your life.
How could it be otherwise? If we don't do the thing we hate most first, it sits there like a great big wall, blocking us from real progress. It hangs over us like a cloud.
And it can lead to denial about how productively we're using our time. Just think of how long you can spend coming up with excuses for why you're not doing it!
Habits for Success
That pearl of wisdom comes courtesy of renowned U.K. therapist Marisa Peer (and thanks to Louise LeVell for pointing it out on LinkedIn). It's a great antidote to procrastination.
Marisa also points out the consequences of the bad habits that we just can't shake. She adds, "People who don't succeed often seem to give up their goals, rather than do what they hate." Giving up is probably the worst bad habit I can think of.
Bad Habits, Negative Results
Yes, habits: the things we choose to do. Mostly every day. Habits have a habit of defining us – often by default, especially if you don't bother to do anything about the bad ones.
As the late Stephen R. Covey, author of the multimillion-selling book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, reminded us, "I am what I am today because of the choices I made yesterday." Well, you can't argue with that.
Nor with author and thought leader Frank Sonnenberg's assertion that "negative habits produce negative results." The trick is, of course, living your life in the light of that knowledge.
Eradicating negative behaviors in your life is not easy but our article Breaking Bad Habits explores ways you can do it – and if not now, when? As author Shaun Hick says, "It shouldn't take a life-changing event for you to change your life."
Out With the Old Habits, in With the New
So we asked our friends and followers on social media, "What good working habits have you picked up in 2020?" Here's what you had to say…
Louise LeVell reminded us on LinkedIn that, "Marisa Peer's approach says, 'Do the thing you hate most first.' I've adopted this with some success over the past few months."
On the same platform, Lauren Nagys told us that her new good habit was getting back to nature. She said, "Stepping away from the computer during lunch and eating outside or taking a walk. Fresh air and a little sun works magic!"
Lunch is Not for Wimps
Lunch at her desk was an old habit that Katherine Wass was only too happy to ditch. She told us on Facebook, "Old habit – eating at my desk and not taking breaks because I was too busy.
"New habit – having an actual lunch break and finishing on time, which I am able to do because I'm more focused and productive with fewer interruptions."
Better time management has been a boon to Facebook's Nellie Rañosa Gatbunton. She said, "Old habits: 1) foregoing anything I can do at the moment; 2) constantly changing schedules even without good reason.
"New habits: 1) doing things I am supposed to do at the moment; 2) schedules have become more fixed, hence I can do more with this time."
Terms of Engagement
On Facebook, Julie Hebdon’s new habit is good for the environment. She revealed, "I've printed a lot less!" On the same platform, Colleen Guy Ruddy told us, "I've extended good old personal customer service to everyone I met."
Hard to say if Salam Zakout’s habit is good or bad. He told us on Facebook that his new approach was to "drink coffee and eat dark chocolate." Depends how much!
Massimo Roselli told us on LinkedIn that he was taking "a more structured and targeted approach in terms of learning to upskill myself as a recruiter and as a coach.
"This I believe has come from resilience, curiosity and self-awareness. The results and the level of engagement with my job are on another level of meaning."
Tell Us What You Think
Thank you to everyone who shared their tips and strategies. If you have any comments on good or bad habits you've picked up this year, be sure to leave a comment, below. And follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter!