I must admit that I really don't have any idea how to conduct a book club on a blog! If you have read my blog in the past, you will remember that Lynn, Leanna, and I read this same book last year (or maybe it was longer than that) and discussed each chapter as we did our long run. Our procedure was to write on a card or on our hand (but this was often sweated off!) key words or phrases that we wanted to discuss while running. I think that for now, as we begin, I will follow this same format. I will list parts of the introduction that were interesting or though-provoking to me, and you can chime in with a comment either about what I listed or your thoughts on a different passage.
And of course, you can just read the book, read the blog posts, read the comments, and not respond at all. That's fine! But it will be fun if at least a few people will participate. :)
"Habits make change possible by freeing us from decision making and from using self-control." (Rubin 5)
- This is so true. I think that is why Gretchen titled the introduction "Decide Not to Decide." When something becomes automatic, you don't have to wrestle with yourself each day to make you do that thing. Like when I did the Whole 30. I decided to follow the rules, so I did not have to spend my mental energy trying to decide how much creamer should I put in my coffee, how many M&Ms were too much for a bedtime snack, how many days a week could I drink a Coke in the afternoons.....Once I committed to following the program, the mental part was mostly easy. I did not love every day of the challenge. In fact, most days I am sure I complained about something regarding what I could and could not eat, but it was not hard in the sense that I did not have to do the mental gymnastics every morning. The decision was made. I followed the plan.
"Habits mean we don't strain ourselves to make decisions, weigh choices, dole out rewards, or prod ourselves to begin. Life becomes simpler, and many daily hassles vanish." (Rubin 6)
- Can you think of a habit you have that while it may have been difficult to establish, now that it is part of your daily or weekly life, the hassles regarding that habit have vanished? Some examples may include morning Bible reading and prayer, bedtime rituals for your children, regular exercise, etc. When we make the initial decision to do something, by default, we don't have to decide every day. If you decide to not check your phone while you are eating a meal when your family, then every time you eat with your family, you don't have to decide whether or not it's a good time to look at your phone. You have already decided that family mealtimes are not the time to check your phone, so you are free from making that decision repeatedly. This made such good sense to me!
- Gretchen listed the "Essential Seven", which are areas where most people desire to foster good habits. Do any of these stand out to you? I need to work on habits under #4 and #7.
"We feel frantically busy, but also feel that we're not spending enough time on the things that really matter." (Rubin 9)
- Well this pretty much sums up my life! That's why I made my 10 Year Goal list, so I could see where I wanted to be in 10 years (in the areas of life that are important), and begin making choices that move me toward that goal right now.
"But I knew that different people need different solutions, so I aimed to identify every possible option." (Rubin 10)
- This is the what the rest of the book is about. Identifying your personality and how you respond to outer and inner expectations. When you can identify these things, you can create good habits and eliminate bad habits in ways that work with your personality.
That's all for this week. Please leave a comment if you wish to discuss anything I listed or above or another part of the introduction that resonated with you.
I can't wait to hear from you!