4 Habits I’m Keeping in 2022

notebook with coffeeCultivating good habits takes time, consistency, and determination. So when you have a healthy habit, it’s essential to keep it going. As 2021 came to a close, I reflected on my successful practices and not-so-successful habits. I need to eliminate some patterns, like overthinking, but many were beneficial in making my year successful, so I’m keeping them. These are the ones I’m taking into 2022.

Getting Up Early

For many people, waking up early can be a real challenge, but it’s no secret that successful people tend to wake up well before their workday begins. You feel in charge of your time when you wake up early, not racing to catch up. This strategy lets you start the day with a clear mind and purpose. I began waking up early during the lockdown. It started by enjoying my morning coffee while reading a couple of pages of my book or checking social media. It was the only alone time I could find when we were all at home together.
 
Now it has evolved; I wake up about 3 hours before arriving at work. After I make my coffee and feed the pets, I sit down to make a to-do list before doing anything else. My list includes career, personal, and my side hustle fun. I organize the list by tasks that need to be done immediately or later in the week.
 
Taking a few minutes each day to write a to-do list was so effective that after I finished the list, I started jotting down new ideas I wanted to try, a topic to research, or something I wanted to write about. So that led me to my next habit.

Keeping an Idea Journal

Creativity isn’t just for artists; inspiration and ideas can strike anytime. Usually, an idea will pop into my head when I’m just about to fall asleep or in the shower, not in note-taking-friendly places! So I began writing down my creative thoughts. I keep a physical notebook and a page on my phone to record anything that comes to mind. I don’t evaluate the idea; I just write it down. Writing things down combats the natural forgetfulness we all have experienced.
 
This idea journal has helped not only with recording my creative ideas but also with accomplishing them. It reminds you not to abandon your dreams but continue to strive to achieve them.

Reading a lot

I love reading. It was the one constant thing I could depend on in such an uncertain year. I filled any spare time with a book. But what about when you don’t have free time? You must prioritize reading and schedule a block of time each day to read. Lose yourself in contemporary fiction; grab the latest self-help book or an autobiography of your favorite leader. Whatever you read, it is time well spent.
 
I spent so much time reading in 2021, and I don’t see that slowing down in the coming year.

Saying NO 

I started this habit late in the year. I saw people using the month of November as an opportunity to say no to things they no longer needed in their lives. It was a fantastic transformation.
In the months I started saying “no,” I realized what I was really saying was “yes” to myself. Saying yes every time someone needs your help can drain you of energy and even happiness. It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments—you spread yourself too thin.
 
In 2022 I want to be mindful of my time and how I spend it, and I don’t want to feel guilty about that decision. Saying no isn’t easy, but once you master it, you’ll find that you’re less stressed and more focused on the things that matter to you.
 

Moving Forward

I know moving into 2022 will not be an easy transition. Any journey worth taking has bumps along the way. But these four habits have helped me in the past, and I predict they will help me in the future. Cultivating positive habits invites opportunities and achievements into your life. Focusing on your successful habits will help you improve various areas of your life. What habits help you be more productive or successful? I’d love to hear some of them!

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