18 Microhabits to Start Today

(That Are Actually Micro)

Mathilde Langevin
Apr 28 · 5 min read
Image for post
Image for post
Jukan Tateisi via Unsplash.

hab·it: a settled or regular impulse to initiate a behavior, tendency or practice with little or no conscious thought.

We know that the human being is a creature of habit.

Why?

Because instead of biting off more than I can realistically chew, inevitably giving up and facing imminent failure, I’d rather implement a handful of small improvements I can make in my life and that I know (hope) I won’t drop.

  1. (Or, 1b). If you feel even the slightest negative emotion after browsing social media, unfollow 10 people who contribute to that feeling.
  2. Put your phone on night mode more often. If this is something you never practice, try it at night first. If your phone is already silent at night, add the morning or some of your work hours. If you already do it all day, maybe throw the phone away?
  3. If it takes under one minute, do it now. I cannot stress this one enough. Fold the clothes. Pick up the crumbs. Windex the bathroom mirror. Clean the surface of your desk. Answer the text (if it’s urgent).
  4. Practice sustained attention. If you’re watching a movie, make sure it’s the only thing you are doing. If you’re reading a book, put away distractions. If you’re bored, see how long you can stand on each foot, noticing how long you are able to keep both your balance and focus on one simple task. (Studies show that more screen time is associated with a reduced ability to maintain our focus in real life).
  5. Make (short) lists. Writing down your tasks is a way for your brain to pre-commit to doing them, increasing the likelihood that you will. Lists also dampen anxiety by creating structure, as long as the list isn’t the length of an epic trilogy.
  6. Check things off of your lists. Marking a task as completed triggers a rush of dopamine to the brain, the same pleasure signal released during meditation, food consumption, sex, risk-taking, etc. It also encourages you to continue accomplishing tasks, chasing that “rush” over and over.
  7. If you can walk, bike, skateboard, or run somewhere; do it.
  8. If you eat fast-food three times a day, start by cutting down to one. If you eat dessert every night, try skipping one day a week. If you eat relatively clean, try adding more local and organic foods. While eating clean appear like a daunting process at first, taking the first baby steps will drastically improve your health.
  9. Make your bed as soon as you leave it.
  10. Brush your teeth twice a day. Already do? Do it after every meal — it may reduce your desire to snack.
  11. Turn the dial to cold water for 30 seconds in your shower. Make your way up from there.

In life, you reap what you sow.

If you want to make better things happen, you have to begin carving minutes for it. Over time, each consistent microhabit will have the potential to form an actual habit. And eventually, each habit has the power to become an embedded routine.

Musings by M

Sharing my thoughts, my tops, my tips, and my stories — while inspiring you to cultivate yours.

Mathilde Langevin

Written by

Calm-conscious minimalist seeking balance through a simple & mindful life. I write about all things wellness for lifestyle brands + creatives. hello@mathilde.ca

Musings by M

A portal to discuss with the world and an open space for stories, poems, opinions, questions, and much more. For collaborations, always feel free to contact hello@mathilde.ca.

Mathilde Langevin

Written by

Calm-conscious minimalist seeking balance through a simple & mindful life. I write about all things wellness for lifestyle brands + creatives. hello@mathilde.ca

Musings by M

A portal to discuss with the world and an open space for stories, poems, opinions, questions, and much more. For collaborations, always feel free to contact hello@mathilde.ca.

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