"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit." - Aristotle
As a high-performance athlete, you spend a considerable amount of time training. Certainly you have to develop the strength, endurance and flexibility you need to excel, but you also have to hone your technique to the point where you can do it without thinking. You get feedback from your coach about your technique and then practice the new approach over and over again until it’s automatic. Great practice leads to great habits.
You can make significant strides toward your dream if you know how to build the right habits.
One example of an elite athlete who practices good habits is Carey Price, a goaltender for the National Hockey League. Price is one of the best goaltenders in the world and is well-known for his good habits. He has very specific routines that he does before every single game that never varies. This is the same for a lot of the best athletes in the world.
There's a reason for this. Routines and habits are what determine our ability to consistently make progress over an extended period of time. If we want to install a new habit, or build a new routine, we need to work on that over a certain amount of time. Research suggests that it takes anywhere between 20 and 120 practise sessions to install new habits.
Once you do those practice sessions, these new habits become automatic. As soon as it's automatic, you can liberate your willpower. The willpower that you spent installing that new habit can now be focused on performance. At that point you can put more effort into working towards a world-class performance.
This is why this Program focuses on habits-based learning. I want you to take 5, 10, or 15 minutes each day to install a new habit and do that consistently over time. I'd also like you to focus on installing one habit at a time. When we try and change too much at once, we don't have the willpower to be able to sustain the changes. Work on one habit at a time, and then move on to the next one.
We fall into habits because we are programmed to conserve energy. No one can sustain a heightened level of mental focus and attention all the time. We need automated processes. But we also need to make sure that our habits are helping us achieve our potential.
Today's POWER-UP: Identify My New Habits and Routines
Take some time now to identify a few habits or routines that you want to build this year. You can use The Dream Setting Workbook. Or you can fill out the form below to send me your notes. This will help us to give you some tips and feedback on how you're doing.
Dive Deeper: Learn from the Pros
Check out these daily habits of the top athletes in the world and how you can apply them to your life.