This week I feel I have finally embedded Meditation as a habit. I have meditated off and on now for a number of years, and when I do I really feel the benefit. How is it then that if I know its beneficial I have struggled to make it a daily habit? There could be lots of reasons;

  • Do I really want to form the habit? Is there some underlying reason in my subconscious holding me back? I don’t think so for this particular habit, I know the value.
  • Is there something else I prefer doing? Kind of, this is probably the main reason for my issue, as you probably know, I’m a triathlete and have been Ironman training. Fitting in both my daily exercise regime and 20 minutes meditation was very difficult. I did use meditative running techniques though, so that was actually a step towards the goal itself
  • Do I have the time? Again, this has been an issue. I’m a Dad and Husband, I am starting a business, I have Non Exec roles, I run, I cycle, I swim. How can I fit meditation in. But the fact is if I do, I will do all the others better.
  • Do I track my habit? Taking time to track our progress, is a proven method of success in most areas of life. My Meditation app does this for me, but sadly I haven’t been paying that much attention to it.  I do track my fitness down to the very last step or stroke, so I do know about the importance of tracking.
  • Does anyone else know or even care if the habit exists? Telling others about your plans to form a new habit, puts an internal pressure on your limbic system, the part of your brain that deals with emotions. The limbic system doesn’t want to be seen as a public failure so it will be more committed to the habit if others know about it. My wife sort of knows I do meditate, but doesn’t know why.
  • Have I scheduled the time? Not really. If, and only if, I am not training, haven’t got a breakfast meeting or a train commute, then it’s  scheduled.
  • Is it anchored to any other behaviours or habits in life so that it becomes part of a ritual. For example, I remember to take my nutrients in the morning by getting them out of the bathroom cabinet, with my hair product, deodorant etc, its a ritual, everything comes out and everything goes back in when I am done. If I get a new supplement, I just add it into the system.

Reflecting on the points above, particularly the latter two I thought about how I could make my meditation stick. I like to meditate first thing. What else do i do first thing everyday? Well I go for my daily ablutions! Without going to too many details, I like to take my time. It usually takes me 10-20 minutes. Then it hit me – Poo-detating. Why not combine these two morning tasks? So that’s what I have done.  I have also downloaded a Habit forming app to put a better tracking system in place. I have also talked to my wife about my new idea. Guess what, as its a bit weird sounding, every morning she asks me, have you Poo-detated and every morning my reply is yes I have.

I have now meditated for more days on the trot than I have ever done, and more importantly I am really feeling the benefit.

Ian Hacon

Poo-Detation guru!