Habit: a settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up.
Okay, we’ve all been there. It’s December 31st and we’re with our friends, family, and loved ones. We’re all sitting around talking about the single-most important thing we’re going to work on as part of our New Year’s Resolution. I’m going to lose weight, going to get out of debt, and one that seems more common the day after – I’m going to give up drinking (yeah, okay!). Now, I love the concept of setting goals for myself, but I know myself well enough to know that I’m likely going to fail. Not because I don’t have the willpower, not because I’m not disciplined, and not because I’ve changed my mind, but because my life simply moves too fast to dedicate time to establishing a new routine.
Did you know that it takes the average person 66 days to establish a new habit?
26.4 EPISODES OF OZARK!
We are creatures of habit, but what they don’t tell you, is how hard it is to actually create those habits. We typically create habits around things that we love. Things we enjoy doing. Is that possibly why we can’t hit our weight goals? Because standing in a pool of our own sweat for an hour a day sounds like so much fun! Is it why we can’t get out of debt? Going to the store and buying a brand new flat screen sounds much better. Or why we can’t give up drinking?! I promise I’ll stop after the Super Bowl.
If you think about it, most of our current habits stem from habits that were created as children or teenagers. The reason? Life was simpler. We didn’t have to worry about jobs, bills, children, spouses, in-laws, etc., which made it easier to commit to 66 days worth of something we loved.
What does this have to do with business, or even more importantly, how does it relate to what we’re doing here at Techcycle Solutions? I’m so glad you asked! What if I told you that creating habits in the workplace is actually a bad thing?
Now, don’t be crazy, there’s a huge difference between creating habits and creating processes. Processes are built to keep things moving. Habits are created to walk in place. If you look at habits for what they really are, it’s kind of like walking on a treadmill vs walking to the top of a mountain. While physically they may give you the same reward, it’s the difference in experience, and the feeling of accomplishment that one gives you over the other. One feels like progress, the other feels like maintenance.
Habits can kill any business, but they can be especially damaging to small businesses. Those of you that have had the benefit of working in small businesses, could you imagine committing to a habit for over two months and not changing course a single time?! No, you can’t…. Because it goes against the single-most important aspect of working for a small business.
We have to be ready to adapt to every obstacle and every change. Sometimes this happens weekly, daily, or sometimes even by the minute. An inability to roll with the punches can create negative momentum in a business. And, as the saying goes, if you’re not growing you’re dying. With the tech industry already being a fast-paced one, it’s so important for every member of our team to be able to disrupt the ideology of creating habits and go with the momentum. We start by bringing in people who understand that any momentum is better than standing still.
So what’s the moral of the story? Habits are overrated. Take what every day has to offer. Stay out of your own way. Embrace change, and strive to always have momentum going into the next day. Understand that change can be tough, but it’s also necessary. The world doesn’t stand still, so why should you?!
Until next time!