At the start of the year, I used to write up a reflection of the previous year via social media posts, both good and bad. It was an idea I pinched from James Clear and it did seem to make me feel more accountable…well, for a few years anyway. Also, I did not have the following that James has so that could explain my lack of accountability!
What I have worked out (eventually), is that being accountable to people you don’t know actually has a limited impact on success. A lot of things I wanted to be doing more of (exercise, writing, meditating), I just wasn’t doing. I also realised that I was more focused on the outcome and target than anything else, like I must run 20km a week or meditate for 10 minutes every day. There was no quality reference to the output, just the output.
This is all good feedback and I remember Tony Robbins telling us to “change your approach until you get the result you want” so James Clear came to the rescue again with the aid of his bestselling book “Atomic Habits”. Below is how James sees it:
Here are some more examples of linking your habits to your desired identity:
If you want to write a book, you should focus on becoming the type of person who writes every day.
If you want to learn a new language, you should focus on becoming the type of person who studies every day.
If you want to retire early, you should focus on becoming the type of person who saves money every month.
For the year 2022, I am committed to becoming someone who is active and healthy, who takes the time for calmness and reflection and gratitude when I can and who will spend some part of each day writing something down.