Consistency - A Checkbox Method

This article covers the simple yet most impactful way of staying consistent. The Checkbox method makes you closer to the identity you want to become.

Consistency - A Checkbox Method
Photo by Samantha Gades / Unsplash

In order for something to be consistent, you need to be aware and prepared for the fact that you will change, your environment will change and for heaven's sake, even the entire world will be changing. In fact, it is changing as you read, you just can't notice it. So, how can you make sure you are consistent in whatever it is that you do. Most importantly, why is it that consistency is important. let's find out.

Ever since we were children, I am sure most of us were told that hard work is what gets you to places. So, we blindly believe that because we want to be identified as a person. We start with identifying ourselves as becoming a future  Astronaut, Cricketer, or Scientist. Finally, we settle down majorly in either engineering or the medical field. It is not wrong to do so, I am one of them. I am sure most of you are as well. The problem at hand is most of our surroundings including people constantly change and this change can be external or internal. This change is everywhere, be it in advancing technology to changing moods and emotions within. There is no single reason to not change except for identity.

No matter what you choose in life, you do that to be identified as that person. For example, I want to be identified as a writer or the least a blogger, if I write and publish. I want to be identified as a Gamer, so I play a lot of games. You may have different aspirations but the sole reason you choose to do something is because of the identity you want to attach to yourself. This is a harsh yet most believable truth you will have to come to terms with.

Being identified with certain aspects of what you want to be is extremely satisfying. It is what people chase to all their careers. This feeling is not external but internal and very subjective. You want to fit in. You need that hit of feeling which tells that you belong here. That is why we do most of the things we do.

So, okay we do things to be identified as that person but what about consistency? How does being identified with the work we do relate to being consistent?

The athletes training for the Olympics does not stop after getting a gold. They go to practice soon after they celebrate. This is not because they want to win the next time, well maybe to an extent this may be the reason but the main reason is they identify with the gold medalist they always look up to and they are showing up to be that identity.

This ritual of showing up is almost non-decisive. They just practice. This is not about consistency. It is just about the athletes, identifying themselves as gold medalists.

How does this impact my consistency?

You can make an impact by starting to write down what you would want to be identified as. Then, no matter how small the progress, just imagine to yourself if you came in today to work on that thing you will subconsciously tick for the person you want to be identified.

This is something we are told to do as a child but didn't know it is for identity. We didn't know that. Getting good marks, coming to school every day, and such is to identify yourself as a good student and a student who never misses class. This identity can be damn good if put to test with actual things you want.

That is why I write about this thought experiment. I wanted to be identified as a writer, so I wrote every day and looked for things that would change my view on writing every day and today I am not in a position where I can call myself a writer but I identify as one. It helped me reach closer to who I wanted to be identified as.

In conclusion, if you want to be consistent try making your identity as close as to the thing you want to achieve.

Why do you say being consistent is hard?

Why do you think it isn't? The only reason you may think consistency is easy is if you got lucky. Getting lucky and being consistent are two different things. Being consistent is hard because of the fact that everything around us is constantly changing. In fact, the only constant the world always has is that it is always changing.

From Warren Buffet to Ernest Hemingway, everyone had consistency but the underlying factor pushing them to consistency is the identity of an investor and Writer.

So, in a way - if you want to be consistent you need to be firm enough to say no to the changing world. There are many examples the history has left. These constants are in different fields of work.

Finally, how do you try to achieve consistency by attaching it to your identity?

The simplest reason to push you towards sticking to the consistent routine I can provide is to make a checkbox of all the days you want to do, it may be weekly, daily, or monthly(up to you), and check the box every time you do it. This is the Identity checkbox proving that you are closer to what you want to be identified as. This may seem simple but checking the box is just the end goal of the sub-task, doing it every day is the part you must focus on.

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