I just finished the book Habits of a Happy Brain by Loretta Breuning and I must say it was very informative. You know how you find a book that hits home, well for me, this is it. The premise of the book is a little different from a couple of neurotransmitter books that I have previously read; her premise is that we are still animals and we need to learn how to accept our mammalian brain, instincts and how to manage the ups and downs that our brain creates. It has definitely made me think about several “loops” I experience with my habits, mindset and thought process. And trust me I have read several books about productivity, habits and living in the moment.
I have come to realize that a lot of my habits have gotten me where I am. All these little habits add up and after a decade they finally caught up with me. I am not happy with the trajectory of my life. But this book made me realize that life isn’t about the “correct” choice, but the fact that there will always be trade offs for your actions. I always go for the immediate rewards: procrastination, over eating, always wanting to be in a relaxed state, indulging, not keeping a schedule, not being sober and not keeping promises to myself. Basically, I have no self management skills. So in keeping with the spirit of the book, instead of focusing on lofty goals that seem so far away, I am focusing on my survival skill: self management.
So here is my plan. Breuning says that we need 45 days (not 30) to create a new circuit in our brain and derive happiness from our actions. I must do the habit every day for 45 days. If I miss a day then I must start over and begin from day one. Her idea is that starting this new habit won’t feel good, it might even feel bad or uncomfortable, but once you do the habit for 45 days, I will start to master my new habit and it will start to bring me joy. So here are my habits. It seems like a long list, but they kinda piggy back off each other.
Goal: Increase my self management and mastery skills by doing these actions that definitely make me uncomfortable for 45 days.
- Reach out to one new person a day
- Follow up with one person a day
- Do one routine thing that will help organize/move my life forward, ie. make budget, food prep, self development, being creative, scheduling, journaling
- Drink 2 protein shakes/day
- Eat 50-75g of net carbs/day
- During these 45 days schedule 2 deep cleanses.
So far, as I currently write this blog I am on track with my habits as this is #3 – being creative and getting my thoughts out into the world.