“We first make our habits, and then our habits make us.” John Dryden
Why Habits Matter...
I have spent the last month rambling about habits and some of the more obvious reasons to create good habits, but I want to close out February with the portion of the book that stuck with me the most. There were so many amazing tips and ideas throughout Atomic Habits, and I was furiously taking notes on things I wanted to implement. But one thing you may have noticed about me is that I am a big dream and goal person. I want to see the whole picture and I require a strong why if I am going to bring something into my life. Like you I am crazy busy and am learning the art of balancing all the balls I am juggling. So, if something doesn’t make sense, or if I cannot attach a good ‘why’, then it is a pass for me folks. At the end of chapter 2 Clear dives into the real reason habits matter. He brings it home by explaining that your identity comes out of your habits.
Remember in the first blog of this series when we discussed how every action you take is casting a vote for who you want to become? Our habits are a collection of the actions we take every day and votes cast for who we want to become. When we change what we do, we change who we are. So, you better make damn sure those changes create a better you. Becoming the best version of yourself means continually working on yourself, it means growing and changing and expanding your identity. This is why habits matter! Of course, we are all excited to see the tangible results of budding habits, but ultimately habits will change us and will change how we see and believe in ourselves. Clear encourages us to step back from focusing on what we want our habits to achieve and look at it through a lens of who we want to become, and how our habits will foster that manifestation of our best selves.
Today I am keeping things short and sweet, and reminding you that the best version of you is right around the corner, all you need to do is embrace the fact that you can be that person!
As you decide which habits need to go, and which habits need to start, instead of looking at the what or how of things, decide the ‘who’. Who do you want to be? Your identity is not set in stone, you are not merely a victim of your circumstances! You can take control of your life and your future. You just need to believe that not only are you worthy of that life but that you are totally capable of it too.
“Ultimately, your habits matter because they help you become the type of person you wish to be. They are the channel through which you develop your deepest beliefs about yourself. Quite literally, you become your habits.” ~ James Clear Atomic Habits