Starting Right


Being self Isolated can definitely drive you crazy. Following the same routine everyday - not being able to go out, binging movies, feeling less motivated and boredom can definitely take the best of you. Personally I find that somedays I forget what day of the week it is.


But I figured this is the most time I will ever get to learn new skills and change some of my bad habits.


I recently read a book by Charles Duhigg called “The Power of Habits” and one exert that I am learning to apply says “The process within our brains is a three-step loop. First, there is a cue, a trigger that tells your brain to go into automatic mode, and which habit to use. Then there is the routine, which can be physical or mental or emotional. Finally, there is a reward, which helps your brain figure out if this particular loop is worth remembering for the future.”


It was a real eye opener. I always thought changing my habits was through going ‘cold turkey’ or substituting it for something more productive. Never considered looking at my routine as an area of concern.


I realized that since I don’t recognize these habit loops as they grow, I am blinded by my ability to control them. So this is why I decided to take the first step and write down all my habits, good and bad.


For instance, when I crave something sweet, I am learning to isolate if it is because I want the sugar rush or because I am bored, and taking note of the time of the day I get the cravings. If it’s the sugar rush, I try an apple and see how I feel 15 min later. If I still feel I want something sweet, then I know its not the sugar itself, but something else (still working on identifying).


I have seen some success through this process, but I am slowly learning what triggers these habits, and working on changing them.


I have a lot of work to do still. But, I know if I stick to this framework, I will see results.


Identify the routine;

Experiment with rewards;

Isolate the cue;

Have a plan.


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