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  • Writer's pictureHelen English Artist

Good habits and bad ones too!

I’ve been on a bit of a reading buzz this month. To be absolutely honest, I have actually been using my ears rather than my eyes and listening to books. Quite a revelation for me because I love picking up a book and physically turning the pages. I’ve always steered away from reading electronically for that reason but I have so many competing pockets of life currently that I thought that I’d give it a go.

Now, rather than just working on the house or making dinner or driving, I turn on my latest audio book and add a layer to the activity. I am almost always listening to a book while I paint as well, and it’s funny how I can remember what I heard when I look at different parts of that painting! I do listen to fiction but also I have been listening to books which help me to figure out how to be more fearless or start good habits, and other such things. Only time will tell if they help but they certainly can’t hurt! The one about habits has definitely made me think and do things a little differently.

So, I don’t think that I have terrible habits but I’ll admit to having a couple of idiosyncrasies without which my week or year would flow more easily. For instance, not regularly logging invoices which I get or send. Cue end of year tax return and you’ll find me with the drawer of invoices which I’ve carefully stowed and me with a frown on my face because I have reached the point where I really need to do them. One way of dealing with this is linking habits. One which you don’t look forward to with one which you do. So, I always write my blog on a Friday or a Saturday and coincidentally that also involves opening my laptop.

I have linked the habit by saying to myself that before I write my blog, I will input my invoices for the week. I don’t usually have more than six or seven invoices, and worst case scenario I might have ten, so it only takes me ten or fifteen minutes compared to a year’s worth at once! Then I reward myself by writing, which I love. I have been doing this for a couple of Saturdays now and I’m actually getting to the stage where I like my invoice log because it’s a load off of my mind and the end of year will be a relative breeze. A good habit which has made me feel like my life is in control.

And when the self-help books get repetitive, a bit of fiction takes me off to another land. By finding a new way of reading, I have stumbled across a really productive life hack. That's another good habit which I started without realising!

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