It’s always been hard to pick up new habits or to try and maintain a certain skill. After weeks of doing something every day, there will always be something different, something “new” that captivates me, and ultimately convinces me to abandon any current projects. Leaving me to start over again with something completely different. Be it a game I’m working on, and suddenly I feel more strongly connected to music, or I decide that I want to start drawing again when writing no longer interests me.
It feels like I’m putting all this effort into things that I rarely finish and keep on starting anew. As if I’m either afraid to finish something or I’m bored too quickly by the monotonous nature of doing something specific for an extended amount of time. Logic would say that I’d have to mix it all up, do a bit of this, and some of that and I have somewhat had a positive experience using a specific technique called break the chain.
Half a year ago I decided to play the “Don’t break the chain” game.
The concept is simple. You decide for yourself what you want to start doing every day from this day on. When you’ve done your daily task. You mark your day on the calender with a circle. You do the same thing the next day and watch your 2 days circles connect into a chain link. From that day on.. don’t break the chain.
Now, ultimately I quit the game because I was going through a few more chaotic events. I guess I kinda forgot about the chains and eventually gave up pretending I could fix them, but I recently wondered why I hadn’t begun a new set of chains.. I’d been doing those chains for about 4 months, and I was rather proud at my achievement whilst maintaining that chain.
The trick to a successful chain is what exactly you define as a task. I started out with “Draw Every Day” and that evolved into “Draw or Write every day” since that allowed me to do something different from time to time. But honestly, that flexibility didn’t work out. It allowed me to do something different every day. But it also allowed me to just write a bit of nonsense every day or draw a simple cube and that would constitute as a drawing. A few days in a row and you can imagine you don’t feel like you’ve been treating yourself honestly. And that’s a hard thing sometimes.. being honest to yourself.
Anyway, today I’ve decided to take on a new chain, and I’ll add new (multi-day) chains if I feel ready.
My first new chain: “Draw 3 every day”. I want to draw/paint 3 objects/people/scenes or whatnot, every day.