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Doing it Every Day

I’ll be the first to tell you I’m a blunt object. I don’t get things right the first time, or even the 23rd.

I’ve been writing in a journal every morning, and today I realized that I’ve almost made it exactly a year with this habit. Now, this is nothing earth-shattering for many. Many people have been journaling for years. But for me, it’s big. It’s massive.

You see, I’m not very good with sticking with things. I’m generally attracted to shiny things like ideas, concepts, and exiting business ventures. Unfortunately, I’m not one to typically stick with the shiny things very long. I usually abandon them, and only after I’ve promised something. (I’m not proud of this, not one bit.)

This is why something as unsexy as writing in a journal every morning shouldn’t stick with me. It isn’t in my nature. But somehow it has become second nature to me. I’ve gotten to the point where if I don’t write in the morning, I notice it. In fact, it alters my day in a bad, bad way if I don’t.

My writing time gives me perspective on what I need to do for the day. I think about the big things I’m trying to do, and how to break them down. It’s how I distill and choose what I do later in the day. (It’s funny how that simple choice has massive ramifications.)

But here’s where it gets really interesting: This morning I realized that my journal had somewhat become a reference for my last year. Anyone who wanted to see what my life was like last year could, with one book. The birth of my daughter, a new business venture, a trip to the Caribbean, to name a few. Countless fears, countless random thoughts. It’s all there. Perhaps someday–after I’m long gone, of course–my daughter would want to read what I had been thinking and doing in 2010. (I don’t think my life is that interesting, but maybe she would.)

My journal has grown into something bigger than me, and only because I’ve been writing a little bit in it nearly every day. Now the habit is stuck: it’s snowballed into something more important, something that will continue to become harder and harder to break.

This is how the world is changed: not sweeping reform, not huge events. It’s changed in the small things we do every day.

What do you do every day?