Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Effective Habits

They say it takes weeks if not months to create a new habit. Those whose yearly New Year's resolutions include flossing daily know this. To get used to doing something every day without fail is hard.

I must be a genius because in only two weeks I've managed to develop a brilliant new habit.

Since I work for several different clients and have keys to their offices, my key style best approximates janitor chic. For a while I was carrying all these every day. When my back started complaining about the extra twenty pounds in metal, I decided to use two carabiner hooks so I could easily move keys around and take only the ones I needed that day.

For years I've kept a magnet hook on my door. The minute I walk in I hang my keys there so I can always find them on the way out.

When I started using the two carabiner system I'd get the keys ready while I was packing up my bag for the day. I'd separate them then take the keys I needed, place them somewhere in my bag or in my coat, and hang the rest by the door. I'd finish getting ready, put on my shoes, and head for the door. I'd reach for the key hook but my keys weren't there - at least not the ones I needed.

So I'd to start frantically rummaging through my bag for my keys, which had to be somewhere in there. I'd start doing a headless chicken dance around my apartment looking for them until I managed to make myself late for work. After minutes if agonizing search, I'd finally find them in a coat or bag pocket and be able to head out. And I'd do this every day. For weeks!

Yeah. Some kind of genius.

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