Hi! Let’s continue from where we left it back in my previous post: Mentally prepare: time management techniques!
Next mobile app I would like to talk about is the HabitBull app. HabitBull is exactly what the name implies: an app for creating and maintaining habits (hopefully good habits)! The free app let’s you create and manage up to 4 habits. Of course I paid for the full app which is like 4€ once and for all.
The app has a Lockscreen pincode, I really do not know why. Nevertheless, I have set my pincode just in case someone breaks into my habits!?
After that you are greeted with some facts about habit creation: the most exciting one is that you normally need 66 days to establish a viable routine! And this is backed up by scientific/statistical analysis. Nice!
Creating a habit
“What would you like to change in your life right now?” is the question on the top screen. After that there is a select input with the most used categories. Let’s say for example we want to start reading books. Oh, there is a category called Work & Study. Choosing this 6 buttons appear one of which is Study. We hit Study. Three options next:
- With a simple Yes or No each day – Did I succeed today?
- With a Number – For example: How many pomodoros did I study today? (Oh yeah! You can use pomodoros!!)
- With Data From Google Fit – Import my weight, steps, calories, etc.
Let’s choose pomodoros. You give your new habit a name. Then you choose the amount of pomodoros you want to do every day. You can pick colors and link to Google Fit if you want (obviously Google Fit is for working out habits).
Finally, after hitting Next you choose the last settings for you newly created habit.
“On which days do you want to do this?” – Here you choose the frequency.
“Would you like to set a target for this habit?” – This is the total amount of days passed after which you consider a habit is successfully established. Of course, the app lets you edit all of the settings later on. So, for now we choose the default minimum of 66 days.
Ok, that’s enough with the app. I do not want to describe further. The purpose of this post is not a presentation of HabitBull app.
Logic behind habit creation
The logic behind the mechanism of creating a new habit is simple. You have to make a chain of successful points that you have already predefined. This makes the process easier by simplifying the things you have to do in order to succeed. Let’s assume we have set a pomodoro of Studying React per day for 66 days. Our target is clearly defined. We have to make it till the end of 66th day, after this the new habit goes automatic, unconscious. We start from day 1. Then we try hard to make it the second day etc. The key point here is that you have to be very careful NOT to break the chain of successes which so painfully and hard-workingly built. And guess what: this thing works! You feel miserable and guilty even with the thought of slacking off one day or skipping another.
The last thing you need to remember is that we are humans. This means that we do not control every aspect in our lives, especially time. Something might happen, you go on a trip etc. And you cannot follow your schedule. IF you define in advance what should you do in these exceptions then you feel fine with yourself and not guilty! For example, in my case, I create “debt” pomodoros. Let me explain: one day it is absolutely impossible for me to keep up with schedule. I then record the next day to the “lost” one and strive to catch up by doing more in the future days. That is because all of these barriers are the LEAST I can do in one day. The amounts are not exact and fixed, rather the floor.
My habits so far
- Italian – One pomodoro each day
- Programming with React (including studying) – Two pomodoros per day
- Reading books – 20 pages per day
- Write a blog post – Once per week
I repeat: these are the least quantities, meaning that I am not obliged to do just and only these.
The good thing about using an app to record your daily perfomance is the statistics and measurements they provide. Here are mine for the above habits so far:
- Current streak 56 days out of 66 target: current total minutes: 2002
- Current streak 46 days of 66 days (yeah: I owe 450 mins already, I am in a long travel to China): current total minutes: 2649
- Current streak 55 days out of 66 days: current total pages read: 1650
- Current streak 36 out of 378 days: current total 9 posts
That was all I wanted to share about HabitBull app and my trying to make a good and efficient routine so as to nail React after a year or so.
Thanks for reading so far! To be continued…