This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 5
Every day, I’m building up and executing my habits. I keep them simple: writing and marketing.
Writing1 is easy. It is the first thing I do in the morning, because it is the most important since, without words and stories, I have nothing to offer to the world. I do it for an hour or two. At least, twenty minutes. On the worst day, I’ll write only one sentence but that sentence is powerful. Breaking the habit kills momentum and lowers my faith in myself. When my day comes down to one sentence, it has been a challenging day and I had to fight hard against resistance. Managing to write that sentence on a day like this is a more powerful victory than every word I write on “in-flow” days.
1Some days, writing will mean adding words to a text, on other days it will be editing or structuring.
Marketing is harder. I find it tedious and shallow. I understand its necessity for long term freedom and I can find pleasure in it, but I tend to be reluctant when it comes to sending emails, or posting on social media. William Gibson once wrote “If I’m doing this [blogging] I’m definitely not writing a novel”. I agree with him but I’ll keep my social presence somewhat active every day, either by posting on my blog, or on Facebook and Twitter (via social posting apps that prevent me from being distracted by the flux), or answering email (also mostly a distraction).
So, everyday, twenty minute of some kind of marketing.
The hard part is not to isolate the actions, it is to stay on-track and stay focused. I have found that the more I respect the habit, the stronger it is. It is very hard for me not to write when I’ve been writing every day for a month. But it is, at the same time, very fragile. Lose one day of momentum and it is almost like you’re starting over from scratch.
Jerry Seinfeld has this technique where he will cross on his calendar every day he has written. His only worry is not to break the chain. He knows that breaking the chain makes it harder to continue going on.
So, once I have my action goals set for success, the only thing I’ll worry about is to execute on them. No matter what. Don’t. Break. The. Chain.