This month is ‘Sober January’. I’ve never done a sober January. I thought it would be a fun challenge and chance to reset my body after two months of dinner parties and celebration.
For me it’s less about needing a break from alcohol and more about wanting to curb my ever expanding waistline.
The trick to making any kind of change in your life is routine. 90% of our actions are subconscious. We’ve had the same routine for so long we’ve formed habits, both good and bad. I’ll give you an example.
My wife and I both work at home. We live in a 3 story brownstone near the Scottsdale Canal. It’s a beautiful desert oasis full of wildlife and some of the best hiking you’ll find anywhere.
I work out of my studio on the top floor of the house while my wife works on the bottom floor in her private office. We see each other throughout the day but for 8-10 hours each day we’re squirreled away in our separate corners of the house.
At around 6 or 7 pm we both finish our work and meet on the main floor of the house. We share a glass of wine or a cocktail while discussing our day. It’s our reward for a days work done well.
So when sober January came around I knew I was going to have to create some new routines if I wanted to survive. So my wife and I made a few subtle shifts to our routine.
The first thing we did was buy a case of Fresca. It’s zero calories and it’s the best tasting sparking water on the market. When our day is finished I grab two glasses of crushed ice and pour us a couple Fresca’s.
It’s a far cry from a glass of wine or bourbon but it’s been enough to shift my habit of popping a cork at 6pm each evening.
The second thing we did was start building in shopping and other work we’d usually put off until the weekend. Things like grocery shopping or house chores.
Finally, we’ve added a daily walk to the mix to throw us out of our typical routine of wine, dinner, a favorite show and bed.
Here’s my point.
Each of us have habits and routines that determine most of what we do. You can’t be passive about changing your life. It’s impossible. You must be an active participant in that change.
Change is uncomfortable. It requires mental energy which burns calories. Humans don’t like expending calories on mental energy. It’s why so few people avoid thinking whenever possible.
Change requires effort. It also requires risk. There’s no guarantee this month of healthy living will lead to a reduction in my waistline or a permanent change to my habits. It’s a gamble. One I’m willing to make because the rewards far outweigh the risks.
The same is true for business. You’re going to work hard for a long time with no guarantee of success. But the payoff is huge.
Anyone can learn the skills needed to run a great business. The devil is in the execution.
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All the best,