I’m not really one to evangelise for software, and I’m not even really wanting to do that here, but I’ve been kind of astonished so far at what a difference having the app Habit List on my iPhone has been making. To be clear, I’m a hugely habit-oriented person – I kind of like to get locked into doing things over and over again because I generally find it’s the only way I can hang onto doing things that I know are important to me, but which I will otherwise just let drift away.
So Habit List is just one of the many programs that follow that basic principle of habit setting which is to try and create unbroken chains of performing the desired action in question. I used to use Joe’s Goals for this a while back and it was pretty great, but it had two flaws that led me to end up stop using it. One, it was (and still is) not very attractive to look at. Two, it’s not on my phone. Those two things turn out to be really important to me, and Habit List is both.
I looked at a few of the unbroken chain approach apps for iOS, and to be totally frank, Habit List is the only one that lives up to my aesthetic standards for something I’m going to have to deal with multiple times every day. All the others ones made me feel vaguely ashamed every time I launched them, while Habit List is really quite pretty.
But the most important thing, obviously, is what the app is helping me to do, which is reconnecting with a whole bunch of creative habits that I really find to be of deep importance, but also find it so easy to just let slide away, one day at a time. Thus, for me, the key habits that the app is forcing me to do, either every day, or on set days of the week, are: writing a poem (every day), writing a diary entry (every day), taking a photograph (every day), posting some writing/photos/drawing on this blog (three times a week).
So far so good. Long may it continue, unbroken, into the rising sun.