For anyone hoping to change their habits (or find a better way to do their current one) there are two good reasons to set yourself goals: Pause and Ponder. It has become especially important to stop and think about our everyday habits as we move closer to making any change we want. That’s what happened to me when I did some daily tracking of my life.

Good intentions

I have always been into fitness and have occasionally worked out at the gym. A few years ago, while working out with a fitness trainer, she asked me what my fitness goals were. Instead of trying to explain them I realized that I didn’t really know what my goals were and honestly didn’t know how to measure them. So instead I decided to set myself one clear goal to go once a week to the gym and meet my fitness goals.

I set myself that goal because I am not a big fan of working out too often and I found it kind of exhausting. I also realized that I wanted to be able to do it one single time and it couldn’t be any easier. So I figured that I would start tracking my daily progress and daily goals and I was surprised by the results. I had never been that engaged before. To say the least.

Anytime I have had goals to change something in my life I tend to think that I am doing everything possible to do them and that I have exhausted every option. In this case, instead of doing the opposite I was really giving myself reasons to stop and think about what was actually working for me and why I had failed at other things I had tried. Doing this daily thing (not the gym workout, mind you) really made me stop and think about my life a bit more.

Here’s how:

Stop and notice that I have the word “relationship” in front of my name. Reading about my marriage before started to me noticing what I was doing at work. Before, when I read about my marriage on the screen it always brought up questions about why I was with the person I was. Reading about what I was doing at work just made me notice what was working for me at work.

Do more than see if you are making progress. First of all I realized how small the difference was between a small improvement and a huge one.

I wrote a journal and detailed my day. This really helped me focus in on all the things going on. And it helped me see if I was doing enough of the smaller things and if that was making a big enough difference.