How to NOT quit

You can’t sustain a habit unless you learn how to NOT quit.

We rarely quit because we decided to. Instead, this is what happens:

1. After sticking to a habit for a few days or weeks, for whatever reason, the streak breaks. For a few days or weeks, we don’t show up.

2. Next, we start feeling terrible remorse. Our mind says – “It was going so well – it was all so perfect! Now it is ruined.” We beat up and blame ourselves.

3. When we feel guilty and terrible, naturally, our morale and motivation slide further, making it even harder to get back on track.

4. Even when we try to get back on track, we hate that we are not as good as we were when the streak broke. E.g., if we were running 5 km when stopped, now we can run only 3 km.

So what? Who is tracking whether you run 3 km or 5 km? What prevents us from starting again and starting small?

It is all in the mind.

Here is a little secret: Habit streaks can never be perfect – imperfection is the rule.

Nobody is castigating us for breaking our streak – only we ourselves are.

Instead, just restart, and start small. Don’t overthink. Restart as many times as it takes. That way, you can maintain any habit indefinitely. You have my word on that.

– Rajan

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