On November 30th, I hit a 103-day streak of walking at least 10,000 steps a day. (And then my watch charger broke. That doesn’t mean I stopped walking, but I have no idea how many steps I got each day my wrist was naked—and those steps definitely didn’t get recorded.)
Technical difficulties aside, my 103-day success reminded me of what a great motivator streaking is! In almost every post I’ve written about habits, I’ve mentioned consistency as being critical. A streak is the result of steadfast consistency.
For me, short streaks aren’t motivating. Maybe because I know it could be fleeting, and the stakes just aren’t high enough. I didn’t care—or maybe I didn’t even notice—when I was on Day 6 or 15. But once the number started getting big (maybe around Day 45), maintaining the streak became irresistible. Starting over after a week? No big deal. But after a month? Oof.
Streaks are great because they force you to focus on the activity required to achieve the goal instead of the goal itself. In other words, if you want to walk 10,000 steps a day for 100 days, what matters is taking each step each day instead of taking 1 million steps. It’s a much more manageable, less intimidating way to frame a goal that would otherwise feel daunting.
Are you on a roll? What are you doing and for how long? And how are you tracking your progress? (That last question reminded me of a really old post I wrote about progress mapping! Something to consider, now that I’m less trusting of technology…)