Want to know one of the best things you can do when trying to create a new habit? Use a habit tracker.
Whether you want to get more organized, feel calmer, get healthier or improve a skill, it’s one of the best ways to create and build good habits.
Habit trackers are one of the most popular types of bullet journal pages. On Instagram, #habittracker has over 95,000 posts!
It looks like there are plenty of us who want to build good habits!
What is a habit tracker?
A habit tracker is a way of recording whether or not you did a specific activity on a specific day.
They can range from something as simple as a tick or cross on a calendar, through to more elaborate graphs or designs.
Why are habit trackers so popular?
The simple answer is it’s because they work. There’s no doubt that they help you to build good habits.
Why are habits important?
Habits help us reach our goals. They help us become the person we want to be.
It’s not always easy to form good habits or stay on track to reach our goals. Using a tracker can help you develop the habits that lead to reaching goals in virtually any part of your life.
Whether you have health and fitness, financial, relationship or personal development goals, it’s those small steps you take to form habits, that lead to big changes.
Success is the product of daily habits – not once-in-a-lifetime transformations– James Clear, Atomic Habits.
Why do habit trackers work?
James Clear, in his brilliant book Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, explains how habit trackers are powerful because they make a behaviour obvious, attractive and satisfying. All of which are important when it comes to changing your behaviour.
A habit tracker creates a visual clue. You know what you need to do, and you are reminded to do it.
Using a tracker makes it obvious whether you did the thing (or not). You don’t have to rely on your memory (or lie to yourself). The evidence of whether or not you did something is right there in front of you, in black and white.
A habit tracker makes it easy to see your progress, and when you see that you are making progress you’ll be more motivated to keep going. Because one of the best forms of motivation is progress!
Habit tracking provides visual proof of your hard work– James Clear
Using a tracker will keep you focused on moving forward, day-by-day. There’s no denying, putting that tick or cross in the box, or colouring in that square is oh-so-satisfying.
Habit tracking provides visual proof that you are casting votes for the type of person you wish to become, which is a delightful form of immediate and intrinsic gratification– James Clear, Atomic Habits
A habit tracker will also help you assess what’s working, and what’s not.
You can see exactly when and how often you did something (maybe it’s more than you thought, maybe less) and it can help you adjust your routines, or perhaps change expectations.
For example, when reviewing my mediation tracker I can see that most of the days I missed were weekends or holidays, where my daily routine is quite different from a regular weekday. This has prompted me to rethink my routine to see how I can incorporate meditation into those days.
What type of habit tracker?
Habit trackers come in all sorts of styles, shapes, and designs.
They can be liner-style, circular, grids or pictures. You can draw up your own (be as creative or as simple as you wish), or use stickers, stamps, stencils or printables.
These cute tracker stickers were purchased from stickersforkeepers.etsy.com
Yearly, Monthly or Weekly Tracker?
You can adapt habit trackers for daily, weekly, or monthly habits.
You might decide to track some things per week, some per month, and some per year to give you a higher-level overview of what you’ve accomplished over a longer period of time.
And you can always change things up if you decide you want to track a different way.
How many habits to track?
It can be very tempting to include lots of habits in your tracker. All the things you think to need to do to reach your goals.
However, when you try to change or create too many new habits at once it can be easy to become overwhelmed and give up.
You’ll be more likely to succeed if you start with a few of your most important priorities and then build up slowly from there.
Here are just a few ideas for habits to track
- add a vegetable
- water consumption
- no-spend days
- music practice
- taking vitamins
You can get lots of ideas and inspiration on Pinterest and Instagram, or take a look at some of these examples below.
Here are 15 ideas for habit trackers for your bullet journal or planner that will keep you motivated and on track to reach your goals:
Which trackers inspire you? Why not choose one and get started on those small steps to reach your goals?
Like a little something for your bullet journal?
Subscribe to the latest news and updates from A Lovely Year and receive these free mini trackers to print and customize in your bullet journal or planner.
You can use them as calendars, or habit trackers, or anything else you like.