Sometimes I can’t help but smile at the serendipity of the insight brought about by reading two seemingly unrelated books. Yesterday I consumed Atomic Habits by James Clear and today I started reading Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport.
Atomic Habits was a great book pointing out how positive habits are created and negative habits are eliminated. Throughout the book I kept seeing myself in the Habit Loop, going from Cue to Craving to Response to Reward. In some cases it was a positive loop, but others weren’t nearly as positive. Mentally I tried to focus on having awareness of the habits in my life, good and bad, and started walking through all four pieces of the loop.
I’m not quite a third of the way through Digital Minimalism and I’m totally hooked. It’s putting my electronic habits front and center and I’m not liking what I’m noticing. Based on some of the advice from this book I’ve already taken action on a couple of small steps to help me be even more aware of those habits. It’s crazy! I had no idea just how much of my time I’ve been spending staring at my phone (pretty much a digital slot machine). With a couple of small steps I’m already starting to feel at little more in control.
So today has been full of awareness and action and it has been humbling, but has also been wonderfully liberating. When I get frustrated at what I am aware of I just remember that seeing the true gap between who I am and who I want to be is a great place to start taking action. Without awareness there is no call to action.