I was listening to a radio show recently. A guest had published a book on health, fitness, and religion. He attributed the following statement to St. Francis de Sales, “Half an hour’s meditation each day is essential, except when you are busy. Then a full hour is needed.”
When we get behind on the time curve, our first course of action is to short-cut or eliminate daily plans that have lower priorities. This can be something as simple as daily prayer, exercising, skipping a meal, stress relief and more.
There was a reason why you chose to have an item on your ‘to do’ list. Different days have different requirements. But, what about those requirements that occur daily? We tend to prioritize them as to the ‘must do’ and ‘like to do’ and ‘hopefully I can get around to it.’ If an item is on your daily list, it should never be undone at the end of the day.
I embarked several years ago on a 31-day Facebook group challenge to write 500 words a day. I completed the 31-Day challenge easily. Several other people and I decided to continue the 500 words/day challenge.
After several months I found that I could finish the 500 words and not be challenged. It took seven or eight minutes to write 500 words. I bumped up my daily writing to a 1000 words a day. That lasted a month, and I bumped it up to 1100 words a day.
I kept that pace for at least a year. The daily habit of writing faced many challenges to my time. On a few occasions, I found myself in bed for the night, and my brain told me that I had not written that day. It was after midnight. I got up and went to my keyboard and spent time completing that daily assignment.
This started nearly five and a half years ago. I have not missed a day of dedicated writing. I am no longer concerned whether it is a hundred words or a thousand words a day. My concern is that it gets done. It is a habit. There have been a few days when I didn’t have a computer with me (the thirty days in Spain a couple of years ago when my wife and I walked 500 miles on the Camino de Santiago comes to mind), and I was forced to write long-hand to meet my daily requirement.
I know a few people who never miss a day of exercise. I know a few others who have been praying daily for decades. We set goals, and we ensure that we accomplish them daily. It becomes part of our lives.
What is important enough in your life that you should make it mandatory to do daily? I don’t know; everyone is different. But, consider a balance of things to keep you healthier, wealthier and wiser. Keep a degree of stability in your life.
One day missing a daily goal (exercise, for example) can make it easier to miss it two days in a row. After a while, achieving that daily goal loses its importance. A while longer and it might end up being months without exercising. This scenario happens a lot to New Year’s Resolutions.
What one thing can you add to your daily repertoire that can become a habit over time if you do it every day? How will it affect your future?