THE 90-PERCENT RULE

Repetitive Organization

One of the things I explain in Make That, Break That is that bad habits are overcome, not by trying to defeat them, but rather by “overwriting” them with better habits. Once a person understands how habits are created and then utilizes that newfound knowledge to develop the kinds of habits that he wants, that person’s bad habits will tend to fade away.

In Make That, Break That, I also delve into the different areas of life where new habits can be beneficial and where their creation can have a domino effect of giving rise to even more good habits. And one of those areas where a new habit can have an ongoing effect is in the area of organization.

Most of us are terribly disorganized. And while it would not be good for us to totally abandon those spontaneous aspects of life that make life worth living, we often create more stress for ourselves than we ought because we are disorganized in everything we do.

Just think about it! Up to 90 percent of what you do in your life is repetitive. You brush your teeth every day, you eat every day, you go to school or to work almost every day, and you go to bed every night. But while these parts of our lives are the parts we do “automatically” and without thought, the irony is that these parts of our lives are the parts that are most important, because these repetitive parts of our lives are the parts that affect all the other parts.

It is vital, therefore, that we forge good habits of organization. It is vital that we create habitual behaviors in the repetitive parts of our lives so the non-repetitive parts can be more productive and more fulfilling. Wise is the person who maximizes his health and happiness by minimizing his stress.

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