Seinfeld is my all-time favourite TV show and the tales of Jerry Seinfeld’s work ethic are legendary.

Many years ago, a young comedian asked Jerry if he had any tips for him:

His response was that the way to be a better comic was to create better jokes and the way to create better jokes was to write every day.

Jerry told him to get a big wall calendar that has a whole year on one page and hang it on a prominent wall. The next step was to get a big red magic marker.  He said for each day that he sits down to write he gets to put a big red X over that day.

“After a few days you’ll have a chain. Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. You’ll like seeing that chain, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt.  Your only job is to not break the chain.

What great advice for creating successful habits!

There’s something compelling and motivating about doing something every day and making sure that you don’t stop.

For me personally, I never used to be a particularly hard-working or disciplined individual, but I’m getting there.

I have a couple of chains that I’m determined to never break and they continue to hold me in good stead.

  • For the past two and a half years, I have read every day, making sure that I read at least 5% of a book on my kindle before going to bed.  This is how I read 50 books within two years and has helped me in my personal development significantly.
  • Every weekday for the past four years, I have posted on this blog.  This includes Christmas, Easter and other public holidays and has enabled me to write over 1000 posts so far.
  • Every weekday morning, I wake up before the rest of the family to read my bible and pray.  To be honest, I occasionally feel as though this chain should extend to weekends as well, but for now it will have to do and it has enhanced my relationship with God and my awareness of His presence with me throughout the day.

I suspect that a couple of additional chains could benefit me, especially an exercise regime, but I hope that you get the point.

One of the reasons that I find these habits so compelling is that I fear that if I was to miss a day, then it would be too easy for me to make an excuse to miss another and then another, until eventually I stop altogether.

And so, I read, I write and I pray, knowing that each of these habits are contributing towards a better future.

Do have a chain that you’re determined not to break?

Alternatively, do you need to get a wall calendar and start marking off the days of a new habit?

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