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Life has a way of throwing wrenches into our routines.
A few months ago, I was traveling quite a bit doing speaking engagements. My normal routine was to wake up at 4:30am to read, write, exercise and engage with my followers on social media. But that was sometimes hard during that travel period.
Fortunately, I happen to be somewhat of an expert on habits and so I put my own research to the test. Here’s what I did to stay on track:
- Strategically Cheat – I knew there would be certain days I would not be able to stay on track with my Rich Habits routine. So, on my calendar, I planned out my cheat days – the days I would not engage in my daily Rich Habits. Putting those Cheat Days on my calendar notified my brain that I would be cheating on certain days. This helped me psychologically – it gave me breathing room to cheat and at the same time it set a time limit on my cheating.
- Small Steps – When you go off track with your routine, it’s critical to get back on track. The best way to do this is to take small steps back into your routine. For example, on one of those travel days, I was at the airport at 5am for a 7am flight. I was unable to run that morning. So, the following morning I intentionally limited my running to just 20 minutes, instead of the 4-6 miles I normally run. Two days later I had to drive twelve hours to New Orleans. No running that day either. So, the following day, I ran 20 minutes. Two days later I was on another early morning flight back home and could not run that day either. So, the next day I ran 20 minutes. The following day I ran 7.5 miles and was back on track with my exercise routine. Small steps keep you in the game. Small steps keep you motivated.
If you are trying to transform your life by engaging in certain daily habits that will lead to wealth, good health, success and happiness, you must accept the reality that life will throw wrenches into your routine. By Strategically Cheating and Small Stepping back into your routine, you will be able to easily get yourself back on track.
Tom Corley is an accountant, financial planner and author of “Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to Be Happy and Successful in Life”, Effort-Less Wealth, Change Your Habits Change Your Life, Rich Habits Poor Habits and “Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals.”