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10 Days to Improve Your Life With 10 Simple Habits

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10-days-habits
What if you could get a more charged and energetic life in just 10 days?

What if you could get more done, be happier and love more?

I consider really strongly in changing your behavior by introducing simple habits a little at a time.

Often we’re trying to change all things at once, but it’s really difficult and most of the time you will end up falling back into your existing habits.

Therefore, I challenge you to follow the 10 day program I’ve outlined below.

It’s only for 10 days and you will be making one small adjustment to your life each day. Not something big – just one simple thing that you need to remember.

Once you have accomplished the thing I introduce for that particular day, you should then keep doing it for the remainder of the 10 days.

That way we’re stacking up small habits that in the end will make a big impact in your life.

Now if you’re already doing some of these things that are just fantastic – just continue with it.

It might help you to print out this blog post and hang it somewhere so you can follow it as a plan. If you want to join this challenge, let me know in the comments so I can give you my support (and accountability) 🙂

The first five days you’re changing your physical and physiological well-being, and on the last 5 days we are mainly introducing mindset hacks and habits.

So I hope you’re with me in this and accept the challenge.

Remember it’s only 10 days!

Day 1 Commitment and Why

II desire you to give to this. If your brain is the only for you commit to by telling yourself “sure, I’ll do this”, then you will most likely have forgotten it the second you leave this site.

So three things here on this first day:

  1. Print out this 10 Day plan and hang it someplace visible. If it’s visible to others, it’s even better. Because you want to…
  2. Tell everybody about it. You can do so by sharing a link to this page on Facebook or simply tell your spouse about what you’re doing in the next 10 days over dinner (he/she might want to join in!)
  3. Find out your WHY. What is your main motivator here in life? Why do you want to become a better version of yourself, why do you want more energy (to do what). The stronger the motivator the better results. My main motivator and why has to do with being the best father I can be for my kids 🙂

Additional resources:

Day 2 Replace television with books

Surveys hold shown that watching television induces low alpha waves in your mind.. Alpha waves are the brainwaves between 8 to 12 HZ and are typically associated with relaxing and meditative states.

So you basically turn off your brain.

Now meditation is good for you, and I would love to spend even more time meditating myself. However, I personally believe that 30 minutes focused meditation is better than spending 3 hours every day just sucking in mind-numbing TV.

Really, if you look at the statistics the average time spend on watching television in the US is more than FIVE HOURS!! (source).

So today (and for the rest of the 10 days) I would have you spend the time you usually spend on watching TV to reading books instead.

Now before you run down to the street corner and grab “Fifty Shades of Gray“, let me stress that the books should be non-fiction, sorry 🙂

In one case you start to understand the thoughts of grand minds, your opinions will vary as well!

Additional resources:

Day 3 Wake-up early

At present all research tells us that you need 7-8 hours of rest each night. You might be “special” and tell me that you require less or much more. But the fact is that it’s really only a really small percentage of the human race that can live with less than 7 hours of sleep.

The recommendations for different age groups look like:

Age Recommended Amount of Sleep
Newborns 16–18 hours a day
Preschool-aged children 11–12 hours a day
School-aged children At least 10 hours a day
Teens 9–10 hours a day
Adults (including the elderly) 7–8 hours a day

Source

And then think of this when I distinguish you that from now and for the remainder of the point I want you to: set the alarm clock of no later than 6AM.

If you’re already up at this time, you could try to press it and setting it to 5AM or 5:30AM.

Getting an early start will ensure that you have time to introduce positive habits (like the next one) in your morning ritual.

If you have children, you’re probably already up early, but getting only 30 minutes for yourself each morning is wonderful.

For a long time I felt that I was more successful because I didn’t have a life where I needed to set my alarm clock, but could simply just wake when I (or the kids :)) wanted to.

But the lack of structure (even though I don’t have a job that I need to be in at a certain time) also often messed up my mornings as I became more reactive than proactive in regards to my events around me.

If you get up early, you gain time that you can use for the following days!

Day 4 Exercise in the morning

I don’t deliver a physical structure built for great physical achievements. However, as I approached 35 I could see that I got less energy and small issues with my back kept popping up (that and I’ve started getting hairs in funny places).

So even though I hadn’t exercised since I was 18, I knew that it had to change.

Taking your pulse up is not exactly beneficial for your consistency. Besides a higher energy level, research shows that it will also affect your mood as endorphins are released when you exercise, making it a healthy anti-depressant drug.

I started out pathetic!!!

I recognized from past experience that I asked:

  1. A success experience,
  2. The habit more than the actual exercise and
  3. Something that I couldn’t make up excuses for

Then I went with something that most anybody can serve.

I started running.

I was only running 500 meters at a time (and at a really slow pace) – because I knew it was more important for me to get the habit of running!

I was only running 500 meters at a time (and at a very slow rate) – because I knew it was more important for me to make the habit of moving!

I’ve now run a half-marathon and running three times per week.

For the past month or so, I’ve also started going to the gym three times per week using the same method.

So now I’m up to exercising six times per week. Had you told me that I would do this just three years ago, I would have laughed at you 🙂

Then I want you to find your heart rate up at least six days per workweek.

HOWEVER! Notice that I didn’t write anything about for how long!

I know the research says 30 minutes per day is super healthy, but for now I’m not trying to make you super healthy or avoid life threatening diseases, I’m trying to help you introduce a positive habit!

Additional resources:

Day 5 Take cold showers only

Now I’m only starting with this, so I’m still in pain 🙂

However, I really like the philosophy behind why you should be taking cold showers.

The awesome Nick Reese puts it like this: .

“Learning to be comfortable in uncomfortable situations will dramatically change your life for the better.”

Or you might say:

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger!

By stepping into cold water each morning, you are effectively stepping outside your comfort zone.

And when this happens, you‘re gradually expanding your comfort zone, making it possible to grow and push your boundaries in other aspects of your life.

If you do not continually pushing your comfort zone boundaries (and I’m not necessarily talking about bungee jumping or sky diving) chances are that you will not move from where you are now!

Additional resources:

Day 6 Start your Appreciation Journal

Generate yourself a little notebook and place it together with a playpen adjacent to your layer.

By the end of each day, write down three things that you’ve been grateful for that particular day.

By daily, focusing on the positive aspects of your day, you’re effectively training your brain in positive thinking.

When it knows that by the close of the day, it needs to come upward with three positive examples, your brain will – automatically – start counting for the positive in each and every post.

Notice how it might take you long int he beginning, but once you’ve gotten the habit 😉 it won’t take you many seconds to jot down.

An added bonus of the method,whenever you feel down or pursued by negative sentiments, you can get backwards in your diary to commemorate all the positive bits of your lifetime.

If you’re in a relationship or simply want to make people feel great, you can also tell people who are in your appreciation journal about it.

Make it a habit to tell people how much your appreciate them 🙂

If your spouse made your favorite dish, remember to tell them how much your appreciated it (and love him/her) :).

Day 7 Plan your day

Before you open your computer, whether that is in your 9-5 job or you are working on making your lifestyle business I want you to create a list of what it is you want to get answered today.

Not just what you want done, but the three most critical tasks that you need to accomplish that day.

And don’t just keep them in your head. Write them down on a piece of paper so you can cross them out once done.

Most of the time people are adept at filling their days up with what could be perceived as meaningful the work (our brain will tell us that it’s meaningful because it doesn’t really like us to perform the work without meaning).

However, we can probably agree that not all tasks are created equal, right!

Some projects will take you nearer to your goals (and your way?!) than others.

So list the tasks that your goals will benefit the most from.

Spend no more than 15 minutes writing them down on paper and begin with the task you want to do the least!

Brian Tracy calls this “Eat That From!”

The morale is that if you had to use up a frog, get it answered as fast as possible, and then you know that the worst job that day is done.

And then list down the three most important projects and eat that frog 🙂

Day 8 Celebrate

Each time that you actually get your three most important daily tasks done, you should be celebrating!

Of course, if you reach some big goal you should celebrate as well, however – we often tend to forget to celebrate the small things in life (and sometimes even the big ones as well).

We need to be rewarded for our journey and rewarding ourselves is our way of telling our mind that we’re doing an awesome job!

It does not have to be big rewards!

Even though I would love to run away and purchase a new gadget each time I’d performed my daily three tasks, it would probably break my budget and in the end not make me much happier.

So your celebration does not have to be grand.

How about writing yourself a note close to how amazing you are and leave it along your desk for you to find it the following day?

Or what about opening a good bottle of wine or just buying the some good steaks to put on the grill and enjoy with someone you love.

Day 9 Ignore energy drainers

In that respect are always naysayers.. People who will focus on your faults and always find the negative angle in any situation.

I want you to ignore the people who drain your energy with their negative approach to life

You only have limited time each day, so why should you spend it with people who drain your energy levels rather than people who increases it.

I’m not stating that you should run away and chuck all your friends or anything, merely think whether people around you are energy takers or givers and focus on spending time with those that really hook you in spirit.

It can sound harsh, but I’m very aware of the people I surround myself with, and often I also seek out people who have high energy levels, are incredibly optimistic or super productive (or any kind of super force I want to build up in my life as well).

So actively decide today who you will spend your (limited) time with!

Day 10 Commit to living like this for the next 30 days

Yeah, I know… I only said ten days…

I lied… But chances are that if you’ve made it this far, why quit?

You’ve maybe heard that it takes 21 days to introduce a habit. It’s not completely true, it’s actually more like two months, however the point is that whatever we continually focus on and practice, the more we will have embedded that as a habit in our lives.

At once you’ve probably read this whole thing before starting, I suppose that’s a shortcoming of choosing my blog as the media 🙂

If you had just started out and then on day 10 I would have told you this, it would probably have been easier to simply continue.

So for today, I simply want you to concentrate on the first 9 days and then come back once you reach day 10 and commit to continuing your awesome process.

So are you ready to take action?

I’ve gifted you with some elementary steps that don’t take much time or energy!

You will most likely be able to find some excuses not to do this, and that’s OK. Just know that they are your excuses and most likely only something you are telling yourself because you’re too lazy to do it (it’s just ten days ;))

Get some immediate accountability by tweeting about this right now!

And I’ll have your back on twitter 🙂

You’re likewise welcome to comment below and I will tell what a kick ass person you are!

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12 Responses to 10 Days to Improve Your Life With 10 Simple Habits

  1. Nick Loper says:

    Love these. Nick got me on the cold shower kick too… been 3 months! It’s a weird one, but it’s a great productivity hack.

    • rasmus says:

      Yeah, I find it much easier after training. If you’re all sweaty it’s hard to do hot showers anyway 🙂

      /Rasmus

  2. You’re right, an Appreciation journal will change so much about your outlook. Recently started a gratitude journal of the same concept, even in tough times there’s something to be positive about! Article is printed, 10 days is committed.

  3. Hi Rasmus – Loving the new website!

    Day 2 Replace television with books – I couldn’t agree more. When you become aware of the facts you stated in this paragraph you can feel your brain switching down into a lower level of activity – plus it weakens concentration!

    Day 5 Take cold showers only – Ahhh really? Everyday? Or what about an alternative as long as your body is in an uncomfortable situation?

    Naomi

    • rasmus says:

      Hi Naomi

      Regarding day 5, well at least for the 10 day period :). Nick Reese that I mention actually wants you to do this in a much longer period. However I really feel that you should do it until it’s not outside your comfort circle any more. Then you’ve learned your lesson that stuff can be really hard but you must overcome them in order to succeed.

      I’ve only done it for a short period myself, so no 30 day cold bath challenge for me yet… ;).

      /Rasmus

  4. Dave says:

    Why get up early? You only have to go to bed earlier…. Go to bed early and have a cold shower? Maybe eat some dry bread and water??? 😉
    Sounds like jail.

    • rasmus says:

      Hey Dave

      Thanks for stopping by…

      While I haven’t been to jail recently (well never come to think of it), I’m not sure how this matches ;).

      However some of these things are meant to push you outside your comfort zone. And all personal development happens just outside your comfort zone 🙂

  5. Hi Rasmus, great post! Is it even possible to make changes to habits that fast? I have my doubts. Over and over again I’ve been reading that you have to make one habit change at a time and each change takes time to implement (3-6 months). Making 10 changes seems unrealistic. Great habit changes, though 🙂 I still struggle with the cold shower. And getting up early to run, when my kids wake up at 0600… When do you get up?

    • rasmus says:

      Hi Olof

      Good to hear from your buddy…

      No I don’t think you can introduce a new habit in just 10 days. That’s why it’s a challenge (you get some public/external accountability – otherwise you probably wouldn’t do it ;)).

      Normally you should just introduce one habit at a time, but notice that I don’t want you to exercise for 30-60 minutes or anything. If you just get up and put your sneakers on, go out the door and in again (30 seconds) that is fine by me… For at one point, you will start running a bit since you’ve already made it out the door with your shoes on!

      These are all baby steps. Something that you should be able to implement (cold showers don’t take longer than hot ones… typically the opposite :)).

      Right now I’m not getting up at 6am, however I have periods where I do so (even though I don’t have to get up to a job at a certain time). But having young kids also helps getting you up early 🙂

      At the moment I’m typically up at around 6:30 (however sometimes snoozes when my girlfriend takes the morning ritual).

      /Rasmus

  6. Some serious habits here Rasmus, especially the daily cold showers! I guess if a Dane is doing it then there’s no excuse for the rest of us. It’s cold up there!

    I would definitely use these, I would also offer one:

    – MAKE CONVERSATION WITH A STRANGER EVERYDAY

    I realise that your Mum always said never speak to strangers! But, stepping outside your comfort zone on a daily basis does wonders for your confidence and ability to progress in life.

    Looking forward to reading some more gold on here.

    • rasmus says:

      That’s great advice Thomas.

      Reaching out and learning new people everyday is certainly an awesome habit!

      And thank you for your kind words 🙂

      – Rasmus

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