Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Challenge: Choose three

In creating new habits and starting something new there's always the challenge of keeping it all going. Making a new habit automated takes some 30 000 repeats, so it's clear that beginning something new and keeping it going isn't going to last on it's own for too long - it's not sunk into your spine and long term memory until it's repeated a certain amount of times.

The good thing about the statistic is that it *only* takes 30 000 repeats to make something automated. That means getting into reading books, blogging, running a marathon - they're all something one an learn, and they're not at all out of reach for most of us.

There are things and habits in the life of a micropreneur that can be learned too. Ever looked enviously at the fellow business owner who takes good care of her-/himself? Who does yoga every morning or goes to a ballet class? Who eats what you consider to be a healthy diet and goes out for walks in the woods?
Or the one whose desk is always organized no matter which time of the day you visit? Or the one whose marketing ideas are pure genius? Or the one whose shop you go into time and time again simply because it's so gorgeous and the atmosphere is shere bliss?

Rather than wallowing in self pity and thinking you'll never get to where those people are, or thinking it's all right for *them* but it'll never work for *me*, you could try a different sort of approach.

You could do it yourself.

*They* are people, too. Much like yourself. And that makes most of what you admire doable, if only you start by taking one little step at a time.

Designate the next three months for creating new habits. Little, small, insignificantly tiny habits, that allow you to get closer to what you admire. Do not take a bite that's too big, but ease yourself into a new habit with the time that everyone can pinch from their daily schedule.

For the next three months - that is, until early July, decide on three things you are going to concentrate on, daily. Try to form simple deeds that can be accomplished within minutes. Simple deeds that can be made accountable at the end of the day.

If you want to have a healthier life as a micropreneur, you could for example:
-drink one (more) glass of water during your work time
-eat one fruit during your work hours
-stroll once around the block before you start working, every day
-take one 5 minute break in the middle of working to stretch yourself
-exchange one cup of coffee a day to herbal tea

If you want a better organized work space, you could for example:
-try to see is one tea/coffee mug would be enough for you (learn to wash up right after you're done)
-take a 5-10 minute clear up of your space just before the work is done for the day
-take an inventory (5 minutes a day) on your paperwork/email starting from the oldest stuff
-decide to recycle *all* of your paper for three months and dedicate a special place for them
-take on the idea of C A L M and bring a wee bit of it to your work space daily

If you want a blissful atmosphere in your blog/shop/website, you could:
-take notice every time you shop/read anything anywhere of what makes you feel special and good
-journal/mindmap for 10 minutes a day about bliss
-implement one small deed/thing to your work that would make you purr if you were your own customer and keep at it for the whole three months without changes
-search Pinterest for daily inspiration and collect your findings on your own Bliss-Board
-add a wee bit of BLISS to your work space (be it virtual or touchable) daily

I have chosen three different things to concentrate on daily for the past half a year, and have found them very helpful. In three months the deeds will prove their worth, and it's easy to see if they are worth keeping or if they could be replaced with something else. Sometimes three months will make the deed so automated it can be done without thinking and something else can be taken on board too.

Here are my three for the past 6 months:
October-December 2013
1. Spend 3 or 4 mornings at home a week (I start work at noon at the shop, 5 days a week)
2. No more than 20 minutes a day of social media at work (I still suck big time at this)
3. Stop working 15 minutes before going home and spend the remaining time cleaning/organising
January-March 2014
1. Drink one glass of water a day at the shop
2. Spend one hour a week sewing for the shop
3. Bring some C A L M into the shop daily

And now for the three of the current period of April-June 2014:
1. Keep on up with the C A L M -thing
2. Learn/write/read/implement something about marketing/promoting/advertising daily
3. Take back on the 15 minutes of fame cleaning a day

At the end of each day, make yourself accountable. Ask yourself: "Did you eat one fruit today at work". "Did you do a Pinterest search today". "Did you do five minutes of stretching in the middle of the day". "Did you clean/organise for your full 15 minutes of fame".

And I promise you, after three months of wee little deeds, your life as a micropreneur will have changed. Your surroundings change. You change. And most importantly, when you see the little changes, you'll believe the next little step will be possible too.

So what are your three?
And what will they help you with?


Dar A said...

I love this. Thank you for the gentle nudge. I needed this today!

Tanssiina's Anne said...

Thank you for commenting, Dar! How wonderful that this came in time for you. It's been brewing for a long while in my things-to-blog-about-cabinet, but I suppose now was just the time to bring it out.