100 Days of Writing Made Me Realize the Problem with Daily Routines

It all started with being consistent.

Photo by Mike Tinnion on Unsplash

In the January of 2021, I started a blog called the “Daily Idea” which I wrote for a staggering 57 consecutive days. This was the longest I had ever written. My writing got me 40 subs, but nothing past that.

I read something that changed my mind about publishing daily content, and some cognitive dissonance took place in my mind.

There was a lot of emotions that came from ending the Daily Idea, but it was important for me to do because I realized, “This is going nowhere, try something different.

It took me 100 days of writing to realize writing can’t always be boiled down to a simple routine.

The self-help community pushes habits too often, and they just don’t work.

Here’s some things I’ve learned in my journey.

Problem of Habits

My daily routine is chock full of habits. Good, bad, and weird.

To get to the point:

Habits make it too easy to go into autopilot mode.

Autopilot mode is when your brain is foggy, but your body is moving.

The problem with habits is they create a mental state in which its difficult to step-back, reassess, and adapt.

Writing something everyday, in the same manner, slaughters quality and creativity.

Your mental state is a result of what you do and what you see.

The Self-Help Community is Wrong

By nature, humans are powerful pattern recognizers. The self-help community knows this.

When we locate patterns, we form habits around them. Eventually, everything becomes predictable.

Predictability is ground-zero for autopilot habits.

Predictability makes life dull and our writing dull.

What happens is…

When life becomes dull, WE BECOME DULL.

To circumnavigate dullness, you need to understand how habits cause this.

How Habits Make Us Dull

My favorite book about the internet is The Shallows.

The Shallows proved that when we use “user-friendly” software, which helps us initially, we are, in the long-term, preventing our brains from fully learning.

When we use “non-user-friendly” software, it forces our brains to think, adapt, and become better. No crutches allowed.

Habits have the same effect on our brains as user-friendly software does.

When we become too attached to the habits of a daily routine, we forget to adapt when necessary.

When stuck in good habits, although seeming productive, they are making us run in place, like on a treadmill.

Because of habits, we are blinded by the insanity of what we are actually doing.

“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting different results.” — Albert Einstein

Why we like daily routines even though they’re bad for us

Daily routines draw out the worst in us.

Why?

When we imagine a daily routine, we create an idealistic reality.

Idealism is something we desire, but when we can’t achieve it, we feel bad about ourselves.

When we don’t perfect our daily routine, we feel there’s a problem.

These problems are inside our heads.

Succeeding miserably

Have you ever done something “okay”, felt bad about it, but someone still complimented your progress?

I’ve noticed some people make themselves mentally sick chasing perfection.

Logically, we know it’s unattainable, but we chase anyways.

Why?

Olivia Rodrigo put it well in her song jealousy, jealousy

“Com-comparison is killin’ me slowly. I think I think too much”

Chronic comparing kills motivation. All comparison comes from us.

Stop doing it.

The ABZ framework

Andrew Mewborn introduced me to the ABZ framework which completely redshifted my incorrect perspective on writing, habits, and productivity.

The ABZ framework simplified things for me, and it can for you too.

It goes like this:

  1. What is your end goal?
  2. Hypothesize. What is the best course of action to reach that goal? Do it.
  3. Did that course of action work? If not, create a plan B.
  4. Rinse and repeat.

Habits block you from doing this sort of thing because we get too hellbent on being consistent.

We should be consistent, but differently. We do this by challenging the status quo. What should you be consistent at then?

Be consistent at changing insane habits that keep us on a never ending treadmill. Do this to adapt and grow more in your writing and career.

Final Thoughts

Too many people fail at achieving their goals because they fall into autopilot mode.

Hopefully this post helped you to WAKE UP!

What can you do right now to alter your path?

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Maddox

Maddox

I skipped college, now I write for fun and not for grades.