Tracking the Habit Avalanche

When building a habit, don’t miss two days in a row. I got this from the “Atomic Habits” book by James Clear:

The first mistake is never the one that ruins you. It is the spiral of repeated mistakes that follows. Missing once is an accident. Missing twice is the start of a new habit.

My daily habit is really a set of habits, with a few new small ones added every other week. Thus, I gradually build up a sustainable daily system of habits. I mark every day, on a “cafes of Boston & Cambridge” desk calendar my wife gave me in my Christmas stocking, in the following way:

  • circle: not all habits were done to at least their respective minimum bars;
  • thin slash: all habits were done to at least their respective minimum bars;
  • thick slash: all habits were done fully to their respective acceptance criteria.

Here is what most of my January looks like.

January Calendar, with most days slashed, some circled
Most of my January days are thickly slashed, with a few thinly slashed, and even a few circled. I guess I “take a break” one day a weekend.

Every two weeks, as the habit system grows, it gets easier to thinly slash the day, and definitely to circle it.

Every two weeks, as that habit system avalanches on, thickly slashing and fully claiming the day becomes more of a triumph.

This is how I track the execution of my Frontlog Items. It’s simple. It works for me.

Are you actively building or breaking a habit? If so, how are you tracking progress?