This January, Thrive is celebrating Microstep Month. Instead of setting overly ambitious New Year’s resolutions that make you feel bad when you can’t accomplish them, we want to help you revolutionize your approach to resolutions with Microsteps, Thrive’s science-backed, too-small-to-fail mini habits that you can easily integrate into your life right away.
Research shows that nearly half of New Year’s resolutions fizzle before February. To make sure that doesn’t happen to you, we invite you to join us this month in selecting an easily achievable (totally free!) Microstep that is proven to help you meaningfully form new habits.
We challenged Thrive staffers to test a Microstep for 32 days and write about their progress. The result? Some very honest and encouraging Microstep Diaries, like this one.
Thrive staffer: Rebecca Muller, Assistant Editor
Microstep: Spend a few minutes tidying up and decluttering my bedroom as part of my pre-bedtime ritual.
Why I chose it
I am generally a very clean and tidy person, but I tend to leave my cleaning until the morning before I leave for work. I thought if I made it a point to go to bed once my apartment was perfectly clean, I’d wake up feeling better and I might even fall asleep better! I hoped that this Microstep would become embedded into my nightly routine, like brushing my teeth or charging my phone — that it would be a natural ritual for me that doesn’t feel like a chore.
I was very consistent in my Microstep –– even more than I thought I’d be! The first couple nights were a bit of an adjustment. As I mentioned, I’m a clean person but I tend to get tired at night and leave it until the morning, but at that point, I’m rushing to get ready so it’s hard to dedicate the time. My taking a few moments at night to do the dishes, fold my clothes, clean the counter, etc., I felt so much more calm, both when going to sleep and when getting ready in the morning.
Overall, my microstep challenge was great. I definitely feel like I have a new habit of doing a final cleanup before bed. There were a couple nights when I slacked, but for the most part, I feel like my mornings are less hectic, and more calm and organized. I don’t think it’s had an impact on my sleep, but it’s definitely impacted my mornings, which has been a surprising benefit! I plan to keep going beyond the 32 days. In fact I think I’d feel somewhat off if I went to sleep when my apartment was a mess now!
My main learning from the challenge is that it only takes a few minutes to do something that can have a major impact on your day. We usually think of cleaning up as such a big task, especially when we’re tired at the end of the day, but when you’re consistent about it, it’s only a couple minutes and it makes a huge difference on your routine and overall well-being.
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More Microstep Month Diaries: