Allow me to say this right from the start – if you’re still not using a habit tracker, or your current planner doesn’t have one, you should strongly consider having (or adding) one.
Do you really need one?
You’ll probably survive just fine without it.
Would it make your life better?
With just one additional page per month, you’ll get a lot in return, believe me.
In the beginning, I used a regular planner without any trackers.
At the time, I thought it was a good choice for me.
I didn’t want to overwhelm myself with the sea of endless possibilities which are available when just starting out.
However, if you’re an “experienced” planner user, you very well know how planning out your days (and weeks, and months…) evolve over time.
So, once I got in the routine, I wanted to expand my planner and add some more pages to it.
Among the newly added pages was also a habit tracker.
It didn’t take much time to discover the benefits of keeping (and using!) them.
Here are some of the advantages of a habit tracker which I found to be the most useful.
Habit tracker can transform your life for better
This one is obvious.
Habit tracker tracks habits.
And, as the quote says:
You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.John C. Maxwell
Who would you like to become?
What would you like to accomplish?
How can you get there?
Turn the answers to these questions into your daily habits and transform your life the way you want it to be.
As you know, no matter what your goals are, if you want to make them happen, you have to work on them.
And it often means continuously (or at least long enough).
Making even the smallest steps towards your goals’ achievement in each day will add up and eventually lead you to success.
Therefore, it would be wise to make at least some of those small steps become your habits.
On the other hand, habits can serve you not only as useful helpers to do the work, but also to cheer up your days.
Hey, life is lived in each day!
And if in each day you have a thing or two to look forward to, it can bring you maybe even far more joy than those once-in-a-lifetime big events (which, by the way, may or may not occur).
Make the things you love doing become your habits – if they’re not already.
Habit tracker helps you focus
Another benefit I’ve noticed about a habit tracker is that it helps you focus better.
But since when and how a habit tracker influences focus?
Allow me to explain.
(by my logic, at least! 😀 )
First of all, your habits help you focus on what is currently important to you.
I assume you surely won’t put some insignificant habit or something you find irrelevant to your life in your tracker.
Only the actions which matter to you in one way or the other will be placed in your habit tracker.
And, since they’re meaningful to you, you’ll undoubtedly want to work on them in order to achieve them.
So with the finite amount of time in a day, you’ll want to focus on those habits and ignore or minimize other insignificant tasks and actions (or distractions!) in your days.
Additionally, habits can help you focus on a certain task (or tasks) in a day.
And, in a way, the habits I state there are to my mind being equally treated as tasks.
Since they repeat on a daily basis (or at least should repeat), I instantly know what I should do in a day.
Of course, not every item on my habits list is been ticked off every day.
There are times when I skip a day (or few) without accomplishing a certain habit (aka a task, in this situation).
However, the important thing is I’ll continue to work on the same habit even after I’ve made a small pause with it.
That way I’m staying on top of my goals, moving in the right direction, and remaining on the right path.
Habit tracker holds you accountable
I don’t know about you, but a habit tracker makes me feel like I’ve made a promise to accomplish a certain task.
Which is basically true.
It’s a promise to myself.
Therefore, if nothing else, that one piece of paper holds me accountable for the actions I said I’ll do.
It’s my motivator to keep going, even when I sometimes feel unwilling to do the things I planned (yes, that also happens!).
So, when you need that kick in the pants to get started (and further continue), having someone (or, in this case, something) to nudge you in the right direction is definitely a very useful asset and something worth having by your side.
Habit tracker helps you see the progress
What I really love about a habit tracker is the simplicity with which you can see the efforts you’re putting into things which are important to you.
With just a quick look at the page, you can easily see how productive you were regarding a certain habit.
And you’re probably well aware that when you focus on any specific task in a frequent, habitual manner, the work you do equals to making progress.
(yay to that! 🙂 )
So when the month is over, a habit tracker shows you how well you achieved or completed a certain habit (or task).
After trying out many different habit tracker layouts, I’ve come to the conclusion that the best format for this purpose is actually the simplest one – a chart-style one.
It may not be the prettiest, but it’s the most effective one to “read”.
(and the easiest one to make)
Therefore, if you’re looking for a habit tracker which will give you the answer how much you’ve accomplished after a single view on it…
Then you should forget about having a radial, square, or any other odd-shaped one and simply go for the regular.
(although having other types of habit trackers do add more style to your planner, I have to admit)
This is the case of function versus style, I guess…
Anyway, the choice is yours.
Habit tracker can help you reach your goals
If you want to achieve anything in life, you should consider setting goals, if not already.
However, you don’t need one to succeed in your efforts.
A habit tracker can serve a similar purpose.
Want to lose some weight?
Add “eat less than X calories” or “exercise for 20/30 minutes” to your habit tracker.
Starting a business and want to spread the word about it?
Add “biz promotion” or “social media marketing” in a habit tracker.
See what I mean?
Even though this way of planning your goal will not give you a detailed breakthrough of it, or some other additional insights you might get when using a goal planner, you’ll still be reaching your goal – and that’s all that matters.
Habit tracker helps evaluating achieved
Know how the days pass quickly and after a while, you mentally put aside your accomplishments and they somehow seem to be forgotten?
And because you juggle a million tasks and you’re constantly in a rush for the next big (or small) thing, you feel like you haven’t done as much?
(come on, it can’t be only me?! 😀 )
But if you’ve developed a ritual to make a summary of the month, or a week (and I have to add this is a super-beneficial thing to do), then a habit tracker can help you clearly see your achievements and evaluate them.
(pssst… there’s a post about evaluating and revising your goals if you’re interested to get an overview of it)
Even though there’s a whole section in this post on how a habit tracker can help you see the progress you make, take a moment and hear me out – this one is different.
It’s more obvious that a habit tracker can give you an insight into how well (or better to say, how frequent) you performed a certain task.
But it can also help you evaluate it.
Well, a habit tracker can show you what days of the week were the most productive for a certain task, so you can better plan out that activity for the future, and maximize the results you get from it.
For example, you may notice a certain pattern for a specific habit.
Say, you perform it more or less regularly, but you tend to miss it out on a specific day.
If that is something which keeps showing up frequently, you could decide to double your efforts on the days when it’s achieved well and skip that day or two in the future.
A habit tracker can also point you to the reasons why you haven’t achieved as much as planned.
(say, if you were too busy doing other tasks and you didn’t have the time or the energy for a specific one)
By viewing what other tasks you accomplished in a day, you could see what took most of your time or energy, and use those insights to plan accordingly.
Habit tracker is very adaptable to different lifestyles
A habit tracker is very tolerable to different lifestyles.
It can also work wonderful if you don’t have a strict (or any!) schedule.
You even don’t have to be a planner person to use it and enjoy its benefits.
(here’s a post how you can use a habit tracker instead of a planner)
Here’s what I mean by it.
A typical planner often has dedicated time slots in a day where you place your tasks.
But if you’re not a time-blocking person (or you don’t have a developed schedule, or this way of structuring your days is simply not a good fit for your lifestyle), you won’t get much from using these planners.
Secondly, to stay on top of your tasks, if often means you should carry the planner with you and turn its pages to check it out a few times in a day…
Which can sometimes be difficult to achieve.
(say, if your purse is already full, or a planner’s too big, or you simply forget to pack it with you)
Alternatively, you might not be a planner person, or just don’t like the idea of writing down your recurring tasks day after day, but you would still like to have a way to note and track certain activities.
All of this can be avoided by using a habit tracker.
There you can:
- fill out your daily habits (or meaningful tasks) once per month,
- accomplish those tasks at any time which suits you,
- and you can collectively tick them off when the day ends.
(talking about time-saving!)
And even if some habit is not a daily one, no worries.
Simply ignore the days when you’re not supposed to perform it.
Those were some of the biggest benefits a habit tracker has to offer.
To my mind, at least… 🙂
Have you seen some improvements in your life after using a habit tracker?
Take a moment to let me know, I would love to hear about it.