[zephyr_dropcaps style="withbg" firstcolor="#333333" bgcolor=""]Finally! It's March! Today I want to share a productivity method I've been experimenting with for the past two months.[/zephyr_dropcaps] It all started with the 30 Day Yoga Challenge that Yoga with Adriene hosted for free ( I love her energy!). The challenge had a new yoga video come out each day and you were encouraged to do that video if you could or try your own yoga practice. The main point was to develop a daily practice while keeping in mind Adriene's motto "Find what feels good." She also supplied a calendar to check off each day you complete. It was a totally low pressure way to ease into yoga - you didn't even have to practice everyday as long as you did 30 days of yoga. I noticed as I checked off each day I felt great and noticed small but effective changes in my practice. I didn't miss a day in January and as February started I was surprisingly sad.
Looking at all my x's and thinking about my incremental improvement, I was reminded of Jerry Seinfeld's "strategy" I had once heard about. You can read more about it here or here, but basically it's about making a practice everyday (writing jokes in Jerry's case) and crossing that day off on the calendar. The goal is to not "break the chain" in those x's. The daily practice has to be easy enough to complete each day but not daunting enough to become overwhelming or intimidating.
So now that 30 Days of Yoga was over, I thought about how could I apply this effective method to other areas of my life and of course thought of the bass. February was all about just playing bass everyday...no time minimum or maximum, no set practice routine...I just had to play. I'm sure this sounds too easy (like duh, Linds, wtf...you're a bass player...you SHOULD be playing everyday) but the the fact is we're all human. Life gets in the way and shit happens and then BAM another day goes by and I don't touch my instrument and yada yada yada. I made this a habit though and used too many excuses. I needed a visual kick in the ass. So month #2 of this experiment worked and I played everyday. Yup, sometimes it was a chore but sometimes I lost track of time just having FUN again practicing. Once when I was sick in bed, my hubs even brought my bass to the bed so I could play. I lasted 5 minutes.
The outcome of this experiment for me is that it keeps me in check and my goals in focus. Also the yoga from January? It's still going strong. I usually only miss a few days a week of yoga now as opposed to doing it once a week previous to the challenge. For March I'm building on the bass theme by putting a 30 minute minimum in there now. I also like the idea of picking a theme for each month from a different area of life. What if your end goal is to have a cleaner house? You could just make a calendar and cross off each day you do 15 minutes of cleaning. You could also work up to having multiple goals with multiple checks a month. I think it's definitely worth a try for ANYONE to just experiment. Keep it fun! Last month I used washi tape as my x's just because I'm so visually oriented. Bonus points for having your family or significant other keeping your accountable (warning: they will probably hold you up to this. Get ready.).