Negative Habits That Wreck Your Day

Become mindful of the patterns that sabotage you.

Habits can be a huge asset, freeing up energy and time better utilized elsewhere, while still accomplishing repetitive tasks that need to get done.
However, habits can also work against us when they launch us into non-productive patterns on autopilot.

I’ve been training my body to get up even earlier than usual. This is quite a feat for me since I’m not naturally an early riser. My worthy goal was to carve out additional time for key disciplines I felt would establish my day better from the onset.  I had visions of feeling powerful, prepared, accomplished, and ready to tackle my daily goals by the time most others are stumbling into the kitchen for coffee.

I knew myself enough to recognize I needed a way to get moving even when remaining snuggled in the covers with a purring cat seemed to be the preferred course of action at the moment.

Enter my cellphone. It sits on my nightstand, functioning as an alarm.

I reasoned that if I allowed myself to check my Facebook notifications when the alarm went off, the bright light from the screen and the mind candy of scrolling would make waking up less jarring and help me feel alert quicker.

Well, it did accomplish that, however, it sabotaged me in the bigger picture because now I was staying in bed even longer than before looking at silly memes!

What’s worse, after so many repetitions of this behavior, it had become an autopilot habit of reaching for the phone and getting sucked into the social media vortex before I was even cognizant of what I was doing!

Can you relate?

Maybe it’s a pattern you’ve established when you get to work that puts you behind and leaves you scrambling all day.  Or perhaps it’s what you do the minute you get the kids off to bed.  What started out seemingly innocent enough has devolved into a mindless pattern, robbing you of productivity or authentic refreshment, sapping your resources on trivial things as your hearts-desire goals slip further and further away.

Our habits make our life.
They can also break our life, or at least
keep us camped out in mediocre-ville.

Not only do we have habits of activities, but we also have habits of thinking, responding, relating, behaving, spending, and more! Yet rarely do we stop to examine our habits or commit ourselves to what it takes to extinguish the wrong ones and ignite the right ones.

What if you became the master of your habits
instead of them mastering you?

You can literally recreate your life and position yourself to step into successes you didn’t think were possible, but it won’t happen by accident.  You must be deliberate about this.

Here’s a big picture view of what the process looks like:

    Keep a log in 30-minute increments for 3 consecutive days to observe your activities, or thoughts, interactions with others, and so on – basically any area of your life you want to become mindful about.
    This can be as simple as creating a few columns in a spiral notebook. Label each vertical column with the category you’re tracking, with each horizontal line representing your designated time increment. Use the timer feature on your phone to monitor the time. At the end of the week, look over what you’ve documented to identify patterns. For most of us, this is a real wake-up call.
    Pick one habit that needs to go.  Don’t just make it go away and leave a vacuum though or you’ll wind up sliding back into the same pattern, or worse.  Instead, overwrite it with something more useful.
    Pick one habit to add and create a structured strategy to support it and keep you accountable. You’ll find it helpful to first think in terms of positive routines.  Routines are actions we do in a repeatable order until it becomes automatic to us.  Once we take the first action it triggers the next, then the next.  Decide what your positive routines will be, get those to autopilot mode, then group them together to create a series of habits that impact multiple dimensions of life.

Though you may have some habits so entrenched they’ve been hindering your true potential, by taking the right steps you can start experiencing real change in as little as 10 days!

You can establish the right rituals, routines, and habits that are foundational to success in multiple dimensions of life, and it’s easier than you think.

QUESTION: In the comments below, share about a habit you recognize is either a help or a hindrance.

10 DAY P.E.A.R.L Challenge

I’ve created a 10 Day Challenge called P.E.A.R.L.

to help you cultivate rituals, establish empowering daily routines,

and elevate the right habits so you can create

powerful, successful days practically on autopilot.

To learn more, go to

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9 thoughts on “Negative Habits That Wreck Your Day

  1. Thank thank you very much and wow I can’t imagine for a whole week straight keeping track of what I’m spending my time on. I’m already doing a food journal and a daily devotional and journaling now with you I’m not sure how I can incorporate all of it do you have any ideas?

    1. You’re right. That’s a lot, especially when I know you’re new to PEARL. My suggestion to you is to use the KISS. approach – keep it simple sweetheart. Figure out what is the goal and the simplest strategy to achieve the goal.

      Is the food journal an ongoing thing or just for a short time? Is there a way you can make it easier/faster/more convenient to record what you’re eating?

      The journaling with PEARL is simple and straightforward, just responding to prompts. I can accomplish mine in about 5 mins, twice a day doing the morning and evening prompts.

      The goal of the devotional is to help you focus on the Lord, right? Is it a short one? Can you incorporate it into PEARL? PEARL suggests developing the habit of experiencing the word of God daily using the SOAP method. You could choose between one or the other, or shorten SOAP. For example: Instead of doing a chapter a day, do one verse a day using the SOAP method, but derive the verse from your devotional if you want to continue with it. You’ll find even one verse a day using SOAP will be far more fruitful than just reading a devotional and moving on. SOAP helps you meditate on and apply scriptural truths.

      Now, as far as the habit journal, since you are already getting rolling with PEARL, for now I’d suggest that you not worry about it. The process of PEARL will do the heavy lifting for you. Once that becomes comfortable, and flows in autopilot for you, you can revisit the idea of a habit journal, but in a different form.

      For example: Journal once an hour or so, just a bullet point or two focusing on your inner monologue, what you are thinking about, and just do it for a couple of days. Then at another time, you could do the same thing focusing on relationships, but then just note a few bullet points at the end of the day.

      With all of this remember that it’s all about progress, not perfection. Customize it for you, no legalism, and take it one bite-sized step at a time.

      I hope that helps. :)

      1. Hey there thank you so much for all your help. As far as the food journal goes it’s going to be at least 6 months. I’m working with a doctor and I’m writing down everything I eat and my symptoms. I will be incorporating positive symptoms as well as negative to keep myself balanced. I Journal my devotional time so that to me is a journal.

        I am now journaling my time as well as I can today to see what’s going on but like I said I’m at the beach and everything is really really different and I have plenty of time for devotion and PRAYERS

      2. I started with your program knowing I would have time to make a good start here at the beach with no distraction but Sun sand and waves

  2. Hi Annette
    Very interesting what you are doing. I am sure this will encourage women of all ages
    You are a good coach for God. We all need coaching at one
    time in our life. You are in my prayers that
    this will be a success for you.

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