By Creative Planning Team Member - Natalie Bowers
It’s me, Natalie, back on the blog with a tour through another set of trackers. Last month, I shared some of the ways I’ve recorded gratitude over the last four years because recording gratitude has played a big part in my recovery from mental illness. This month, I thought I’d do the same but with my wellness habit trackers. One of the lightbulb moments in my recovery was realising that recovery is not curing illness; it’s discovering wellness. To cut a long story short, I have developed habits that help me live a satisfying, contributory life even though I am technically not ‘cured’ of my illnesses.
One of the things that’s helped me develop my wellness habits is habit tracking. When you decide that you need to turn an activity into a habit, it helps to track whether you’ve done that activity as regularly as you need to. Say, for example, you want to brush your teeth after every meal, you can create a habit tracker and check off a box every time you brush your teeth. At the end of the day, week or month you can look back and see how many times you did (or didn’t!) brush your teeth and decide on a way forward. Maybe you always forget after lunch, so you set an alarm on your phone to remind you. Or maybe you notice that you don’t brush your teeth after dinner, because you want to enjoy a cup of tea or a glass of wine in the evening, so you decide to move your evening brush to just before bedtime. Whatever the habit you want to get into, tracking helps.
A note of warning though, don’t use your habit trackers as a stick to beat yourself with. Analyse them with curiosity instead of criticism. Ask questions such as: what stopped me from making this activity a habit? Is this habit too big for me right now? Can I break it down into smaller steps? Is this habit even relevant to me right now? Do I really need to do this habit every day, or would every other day be sufficient? Or once a week? Twice a month? I have several habits that have remained constant over the last few years – waking up at the same time, going to bed at the same time – but I also have habits that come and go as and when they’re needed. Habit trackers should work for you, not the other way around.
With all that said, here are a few of the habit trackers I’ve used this year.
In January, I used the large sticker from the ‘Hello 2021’ Goals Kit sheet. I love these tracker stickers because it makes the process so quick and easy. You just peel it off, stick it down and write your habits in the space provided. Job done! I always add a ‘wellness’ sticker and some washi to the top of my tracker page for decoration. For this particular page, I also added some full boxes to fill up some space.
In February, I drew out my own habit tracker in a traditional bullet journal log style, with the days and dates going down the page and my habits written at the top. For decoration, I added washi and deco from the ‘Follow Your Heart’ collection. Obviously, drawing out a table is more work that just using a sticker, but it can be quite satisfying!
In April and May, I created pastel rainbows using Rainbow Monthly Habit Tracker Planner Stickers, assigning one habit to each sticker. I loved tracking my habits this way for a change – the colours were so pretty, and it felt very neat and tidy.
For June, I’m using Rainbow Monthly Habit Tracker Planner Stickers (Sheet R235) to create another rainbow, this time in long thin strips across the page. I love how bright and bold it looks. I think this one might be my favourite.
Are you a tracker of habits? Which stickers are your favourites to use for forming habits? Do let me know in the comments.
Thanks for reading!
You can find Natalie and the rest of the Creative Planning Team and all of their social media links HERE.