HomeHealth and FitnessA Psychologist-Approved Trick For Actually Sticking To Your Habits & Goals

A Psychologist-Approved Trick For Actually Sticking To Your Habits & Goals

Put simply, the Jar of Awesome is where you list down all the things you’ve done so you can track your progress and be proud of yourself.  

The format is simple: Some people fill up slips of papers to feed into a jar, sort of like a piggy bank. If you like to track progress, then a list would work better. Those who love physical journaling would prefer it with pen and paper, or within a designated notebook. Those of us who go paper-free or like to search for old entries easily would benefit from a digital list.  

What goes on the list? Anything you’ve started or continued. 

It doesn’t matter how small or silly the task is or how easily someone else does it. This is often people’s biggest protest against putting things in their jar. An example I tell my clients would be the first time I assembled flat-packed shelves. I took about two hours longer than the instructions said. They were a tad wonky. The point was, I did it! I defied my old belief system that I could never do something like that.

Other examples can be noticing your anxiety and grounding yourself faster than you used to, or ruminating less. That’s progress. It could be continuing your workout or doing another language lesson, even if you were close to convincing yourself to do something else instead. 

It’s very easy to get excited reading a book on building habits, healing ourselves, or changing something about our lives, but it’s not easy to start or continue implementing it. In other words, consuming is easy. Doing is hard. 

As human beings, we are primed to sabotage our progress. So building on our daily discipline is worth celebrating. 

Spend five minutes every evening entering things into your Jar of Awesome. You could also schedule monthly or quarterly reviews to take stock of what’s in your jar, to see how you’ve been growing and how you’d like to refine your processes and goals. 

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