Do you know how to track your Habits?
Habits: the little patterns of behavior that shape our lives. You know, what we do every single day without really any thought to what we are doing. Automatic actions that shape our:
- Thought patterns.
They seem little and insignificant but compound into big results over time.
You may be wondering, “Why is this Christian girl blogging about habits and tracking those habits?” It’s simply this: Our lives are shaped by our patterns of behavior. If we want to change our lives (and live according to His purpose) then we need to identify patterns of behavior that are shaping us.
Our lives are shaped by our patterns of behavior.
Can I get real + raw with you for a minute? There are moments in which I truly fight overwhelm and frustration with my gloves on and I’m swinging full force for a TKO. On those days, the fight feels awesome. I’m wearing my victor’s crown + sending up all the hallelujahs + praise Jesuses that my spirit can cry out!
Those are the days that my goals are before me, I’m working through the to-do list, I’m building up my spirit, I’m living in His purpose, and I am on fire!
Gosh, I love those days! Don’t you?!
But most days, working towards our goals does not feel like this. Most days, it is the habits that we form that truly move us in the direction that we want and need to go to live as His handiwork. Most days, it is the consistency that we keep that will truly help us grow, mature, and become better versions of ourselves as we live for the Creator.
This past week I felt really down, like the kind where “Overwhelm, Disappointment, and Shame hold you down and beat the living daylights out of you” kind of down!
I felt like Failure was wreaking mayhem in my mind. I needed to capture my thoughts and make them obedient to Christ. I paused and revisited the “things” I had been tracking for my health goals. Here’s what I found:
Although I started off my week down, I wasn’t out. I shared these victories in my Instagram stories. I realized by tracking in my bullet journal what I was doing, I could actually see my victories and my challenges before my eyes.
Why Track Your Habits?
Tracking must have a purpose. It is not just about creating cute pages in a bullet journal or coloring boxes. It is about bringing to the forefront what is truly happening in our lives. I like to think of the words of Jesus from Luke 8:17.
“For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.”
When we are truly tracking, there is nothing that is hidden. If you truly desire to make changes in your life, you will find a way to track the actions to make those changes.
What Habits Should You Track?
A lot of people make the simple mistake of writing out their goals and hoping that they will happen. However, they fail to actually write out daily action plans or simple “markers” to help them evaluate if they are even traveling in the right direction. Here are some simple steps to help you get moving in the right direction.
1.| Create a Vision for your Life with Christ-centered Goals
I think a lot of us are scared to track for one of two reasons: 1.) we don’t really know what we want + how to get there or 2.) we are afraid of failure + disappointment.
But not you. Not this time, sister. You are ready to live as His handiwork. To live as His handiwork means that you truly evaluate what the Creator desires for you and your purpose here in this life.
I want to challenge you to think short + long term goals here. Short term goals seem to be easy for people. They usually sound like these: lose weight, save for a vacation, read through the Bible, or pay off <you name it>, etc.
But, sister, to truly live in our purpose, I challenge you to think more along these lines of questioning: What do you truly want for your life? Think, “If I could envision my life one year from now, what would I want my life to be like? How do I want to be living and serving others in my purpose? How will I glorify the Creator?” Then, I challenge you to go beyond one year. What would you want 5 years, 10 years, 15 years down the road to truly look like?
We can set Christ-centered goals when we are walking with Him and in His purpose!
2.| Determine Action Steps to Reach the Goal.
After you create a vision for your life, you need to determine action steps to make this happen. I’ve learned to reverse engineer the goal-setting process. It’s imperative that you not only visualize + plan for the end result but that you set monthly, weekly, and daily action steps to make these happen.
These action steps are what you really need to track! A few examples for you:
- If you want to lose weight, you must daily track your food, water, and exercise, not just the pounds you lose!
- If you want to read through the Bible, you can break apart each book into chapters to track as you complete.
- If you want to grow your business, then you create a plan for e-mail growth, Instagram collaborations, and marketing plans around your business. The actions for these is what you track!
- If you want more quality family time, you can create a list of monthly, weekly, and daily activities to ensure you’re spending more time together!
3.| Create a Daily Routine (or Actions) to Move Towards the Goal.
Once you identify the monthly, weekly, and daily action steps you need, it’s time to create a time-block in which you will do these actions! One way to help with this is to create a daily routine | rhythm. Routines help us build the habits we need to build the life we envision as we live for the Creator. Simply put: Routines + Rhythms can help us serve (more fully) in our purpose.
I’ve found that when I organize my time and create good habits for the Creator, I am using a spirit of self-discipline to glorify Him. That feels amazing to know I am giving and living my best for Him!
Ask yourself the following questions:
- When will I set aside time for these daily actions?
- How much time do I need to complete the actions?
- Who will be involved in helping me create the actions?
- Do I have longer blocks of time on different days in which I could time-block activities?
- Which area is most important for me to focus on first? Once I master this, what will I add next?
4.| Create “milestone” Rewards Along the Way.
We should track our actions along the way + set celebrations for when we reach them! When we are working to “do everything for the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31 and Colossians 3:17), it is awesome to celebrate victories along the way! I seriously believe that the Father loves an awesome praise party!
For example, if you’re wanting to lose weight, take a longer-term goal and break it into smaller victories. For me, I’ve challenged myself to go 4 weeks without sweets during the month of February. I can see + celebrate every week that I make it!
Seeing small victories helps build momentum + shots of dopamine for your brain. Yep, God created that happy feeling you get when you set + reach your goals! How awesome is that! (Told you He loves a good praise party!)
So, sis, Raise your Hallelujah!
5.| Create Time to Reflect + Evaluate Your Progress
I’ve found as an educator, the most powerful weapon we have in the fight for our goals is to evaluate what is working + what is not. A simple purposeful pause to review your tracking sheets will bring to light what cannot and should not be hidden.
Honesty + Transparency are the true gauges to measure our progress toward our goals.
Questions to ask yourself:
- What are you doing well?
- Where are you lacking?
- Are you truly consistent in your commitment + actions?
- What are your distractions or challenges? How are you working through those?
- With what is going well, how can you add more of this in or become stronger in this area?
- If you continue with this pattern will you be moving closer to your goal?
While working through these questions, it helps me to start this reflection time with a prayer. Please adopt this prayer if you’re not sure where to start:
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for blessing me. Thank you for loving me and challenging me to grow+ mature beyond what I knew possible. Lord, as I evaluate the work I am doing for you, I pray that You will open my eyes to Your truth about the goals + actions before me. May I honor You in this process. May I see the areas of strength as the ways You’ve blessed me and my areas of weakness as the ways I will lean into You to become stronger.
In Jesus name,
Ready to Start Tracking?
If you’re looking for a fun tracker to help you get started tracking your actions, I’ve got one for you!
Share the Blessings
Sister, if this blog spoke to you, challenged you, or encouraged you, then I share it on your favorite social media! And leave me a comment below! I would love to hear the word the Creator has prompted you with for this next year.
Blessings from my toolbox to yours,
MORE HELPFUL TOOLS
Sister, if you’re looking for more tips on how to simplify your life with a Spirit-led approach, I’ve got you covered! When it comes to organizing our homes and our kitchens, I’ve got 2 awesome resources to help you!
1.| SIMPLIFY IN THE SPIRIT
2.| SIMPLIFY YOUR SPACE
I created an action-packed download to help you create momentum to simplify your space and get you results. I’m sharing what I’ve learned through years of moving (thanks, Army) reading, trial and error, and listening to the “experts” to craft a single document so that you can put your energy + effort where it needs to go: YOUR SPACE.
I share my story here in The Beautiful Truth Behind Simplifying My Space because this part of the journey can be super challenging!