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Guided Meditations

It’s been quite a month already, hasn’t it?  With a meditation giveaway and some great articles to kick us off, how can we top that?

I’ll tell you how.  With two completely marvelous guided meditations.

Guided Zazen Meditation (~15 min)

The first is by Lisa Schaewe from Lotus Opening Therapy.  She does guided meditation for a Zazen group I attend every Monday night. She has an incredible talent for making meditation a clear, straight-forward process.  She tells you everything from where to put your hands so you won’t fall asleep, to where to put your tongue so you won’t salivate too much.  Here work is truly a treat, so pull up a Zafu and have a listen to this guided meditation.

Guided Zazen Meditation by Lisa Schaewe

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Win a Free Meditation Starter Kit!

Meditation Giveaway

You want to start meditating regularly. You’ve heard about all the peace, calm, and prosperity that it can bring into your life.

But when you sit down to start, you’re uncomfortable.

This isn’t going to work, my knees already hurt.

And you don’t really know what to do.

Where do I put my hands?

This month, I’m giving away a full Meditation Starter Kit.

This contest is only for subscribers to One Habit Monthly.

How do I sign up?

CLICK HERE to go to the giveaway page and enter your email

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Profiting From Your Meditation Practice

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We see meditation as a source of inner peace, a place to go when everything seems to be going wrong,  a shelter from the storm of life. But why not see it as a practice that brings great material wealth as well as mental fortitude?

Perhaps it’s because we associate it with Tibetan monks, with their few desires and fewer possessions.  Or maybe we see some of the yogis of India who are blissfully happy but rely on the generosity of others to continue on their spiritual path.

To be blissfully happy and enlightened never meant you had to be poor.  And today, I’m going to show you how meditating can be surprisingly profitable for your business. But first, you’ll need to understand the Profitability Pyramid¹.

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A Slightly Strange Introduction to Meditation

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Did you know that learning to meditate is surprisingly similar to learning how to control your bladder? While you’re alive, water will pass through your body, and thoughts will pass through your mind. And yet, you’ve learned how to influence one while letting the other run free (hopefully for you it’s your thoughts that run free).

Learning to meditate is like potty training your mind. When you experience a thought, instead of letting it pee all over your consciousness, you acknowledge it and let it float on by, keeping your mind-diaper dry. There are times when you will get swept away by your thoughts, but that’s ok. We all missed the toilet some at first.

First, you must understand that you are not your mind. Your mind is simply another organ in your body. But few of us take the time to train our mind like we trained our bladder. You don’t go around peeing everywhere, so why should you go around thinking everywhere?

If you’re anything like me, you think so much because you didn’t know there was any other option. You might be surprised to learn that you don’t have to be swept up by every thought, swayed by every emotion, or pained by every sore on your body. There’s another way. Allow me to introduce you to meditation, so you can learn how to keep your mind-diaper dry.

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This won’t be so bad.

I’m standing on a wooden pillar 10 feet off the ground.

I shake my arms and breathe in unsteadily, trying to get a handle on my nerves.  I turn around and look down for a moment.

That’s a long way down.

Turning back around, I hug my arms to my chest, take a deep breath in, tip backwards, and fall…

Every muscle in my body tenses, waiting for impact.

Where is it? Shouldn’t I hit yet?!

Panicking, I throw my arms out…WHACK!

.

.

.

Breathe.

I shake my head and sigh with relief.  My body is shaking a little from the adrenaline coursing through my veins.  But as I struggle my way off the enormous mat, I can’t seem to stop smiling…

—-

Most of the health literature of the past 20 years has touted stress as a very negative thing.  Here are some of the things we think of as common knowledge:

  • Chronic stress can make your veins and arteries narrow, making blood clots more likely.
  • Stress can put an extra burden on your heart, damaging it.
  • Stress produces cortisol that makes you hungry, and we all know what stress eating can lead to.

But the fact is, stress is not that bad for you.

Here are 3 things you should know about stress before you worry a minute longer.

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How to know if your Good Habit has Gone Bad

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The Artist’s Way is a book that has been used by millions of people to get over writer’s block. I was experiencing a bit of a block myself, so I thought I’d give it a try.

The biggest recommendation that the book gives is that you complete your Morning Pages every day. Morning Pages are 3 full pages of writing every day that contain your thoughts, feelings, and/or whatever else comes to mind. The exercise is meant to teach you to “rest on the page.” I wanted the writing habit so badly, I thought, “Here’s my answer!” Unfortunately, I was very wrong.

When I started to write my Morning Pages, it felt great. I felt like something had been released in my brain and all my words started flowing onto the page. But even during the first week of doing this new habit, I noticed something strange. I was starting to think a lot…a whole lot.

When week two rolled around, it just got worse. The thinking was starting to interfere with my business. I’d second guess myself. Instead of taking action, I would just sit there and think. What the heck was going on?

Thankfully, I had a 5 minute Weekly Review built into my week. If I didn’t, I probably wouldn’t have found the culprit for another month or two.

“Why am I doing morning pages?”

“To help me write consistently, so I can create great content to grow my business.”

“Are morning pages serving me? Am I experiencing any Big Tangible Benefits?”

“Hell No!”

Unfortunately, I didn’t listen to myself when I said this. I wish I had, and that’s why I’m telling you this story. I thought, “If I try hard enough, I can MAKE this work.”

I was wrong.

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How to Travel Hack Your Habits

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Today, I want to answer one of your most pressing questions:

“How do I keep my habits when I travel or move?”

Love that question because who hasn’t had that happen to them?

I just recently moved out of a condo I was staying in to recover from my surgery.  I had a great routine going there.  Get up and meditate, eat my favorite breakfast of scrambled eggs with mango salsa, and go for a run by the lake.  But, when I moved back to Boulder, everything became so much harder.  It took me almost TWICE as long to do my routine.  Not cool.  What happened?

Your environment is the single biggest influence on your habits.  The strategy of setting up triggers is really just changing your environment to enable your habits.

But what if you could travel endlessly, but still have habits of steel?  What if you could move to another city and pick up your routine the very next day?

In this article, I’ve created an extremely easy to remember and easier to execute routine to take your habit with you wherever you go.  No more missed days.  Let’s do it!

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The Half n’ Half Rule

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“I know my habit has to be small, but how small is small enough?”

I have a simple answer for you my friend.  Use the half n’ half rule.

Whatever you’re thinking about starting your habit at, let’s say 20 min of exercise, cut it in half.  That would give you 10 min. Now cut it in half again.  You’re left with 5 minutes.  That’s where you should start.

Here are some comments I get whenever I tell someone this rule:

“But now my habit is wimpy!”

OR

“That’s just silly.  I won’t run for just 5 minutes a day.”

Both are valid points.  This is a psychological trick.  You only have to run for 5 minutes a day, and then you’re finished! That doesn’t mean that you have to stop after 5 minutes.  In fact, you can keep going for an hour if you’d like.

There are two important ingredients to this formula:

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Did you know that most people try to fix failing habits incorrectly?

It’s true!

Tell me, when you’re struggling with a habit, what do you do? My guess is you try to get motivated. You try to pump yourself up.

“Come on, let’s DO THIS!!!” (Don’t do this.)

Do this instead: strengthen the trigger OR add a trigger.

Remember, triggers are what remind you to do your habit. Why focus on triggers and not motivation? Because if you forget to do your habit, it doesn’t matter how pumped you are! :-)

Plus, a strong trigger will free up your mental space so you don’t have to think about doing your habit all day. You can also double and triple your triggers to make sure you never miss your habit.

In this article, I’ll explain the four types of triggers I use regularly, their weaknesses, and how to make them stronger. I’ll also tell you how I use the triple trigger technique every dayto make sure my Keystone Habits never fall through the cracks.

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What To Do When You Miss a Day

Because, unfortunately, you will miss a day.  And it can get ugly if you’re not prepared.

This course isn’t built to simply help you create a Keystone Habit.  I built this course to help you see yourself differently.

But right now, you have some major barriers in your way. Specifically, that little voice in your head that tears you down when you fail.

He’s a bitch.

The Stories We Tell Ourselves

That voice is in our head is merciless.  Constantly spinning stories about our failures when we miss a day. Here are some of the most common:

“I’m a failure” – Truth is, the only way to fail at a habit is to quit.  Missing one day is really no big deal.  355/365 days is better than 10/365 days.

“I’m lazy” – No matter how many people have told you this, it isn’t true.  You’ve made the effort to create a keystone habit and change your life. That disqualifies in the lazy contest.

In all likelihood, your success or failure with a habit has nothing to do with you being “lazy”, and everything to do with how you set up the habit in the first place.

“Idiot! There you go f*cking everything up again.” – Ouch. That’s some seriously negative self talk there.  I’ve done this myself so I know it happens.  Often we’re hard on ourselves because we think that will help us get things done.

In fact, the opposite is true, people who are gentle with themselves accomplish more simply because they take less time to recover from failure.

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