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David Squires

To-Do: Build Your Holiday Schedule

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The one ironclad rule of building habits: What is not scheduled is not done.

To make a new behavior into your life, you need to schedule time and frequency as specifically as you can. And once you set the schedule, you need to stick to it religiously – especially for the first two weeks. (After two weeks, you can be a little more flexible about skipping an occasional day, changing times, etc.)

Exercise? Don’t put it on the calendar for “sometime during the afternoon a couple times a week”.

Schedule it for “Tuesday at 2:30 and Thursday at 3:45”. Even better, schedule it for every morning at 6 am. (There are few things more effective at improving one’s worldview than getting in a good workout while the rest of the planet sleeps.)

Writing and business brainstorming? Schedule a half-hour right before your bedtime — let’s say 10:30 to 11:00. (Every night. Or pick specific nights.)

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Romantic liasons with your significant other? Okay, we’re nosing into deeply awkward spaces here, but it’s not a bad idea to schedule these interludes, especially during the busy holiday season ahead.

Completely unromantic, you say? What’s more romantic? 1.) A smartphone reminder that reads “Nooky!”, or 2.) Both of you falling asleep five minutes into Chelsea Lately?

Your personal time is going to come under assault the next couple of months. But there is no excuse to ignore personal fitness, your essential relationships or time for creative thought.

Make sure you’re doing what matters during the months ahead. Create your schedule now.

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