Human Flourishing

12 habits that cause human flourishing

Sometimes we forget that in order to get exceptional results, it requires exceptional input. Following Jesus should by no means be a call to inaction but an invitation into excellence.

Here are 12 habits and things that will set you apart from 99.99% of society and cause you to flourish.

1. Go to bed earlier

I appreciate that everyone is wired differently. But often going to bed late is a sign of delaying the next day. Sleep is probably the most underestimated superpower we have access to.

2. Get up earlier

Starting the day strong (and not too late) is a great way to build momentum. I find that accomplishing things early in the day cause the whole day to go well.

3. Turn your phone off from time to time

It’s amazing how freeing it is to live life without being permanently attached to our devices. Of course we want to fulfil our commitments and stay connected to the people we care about, but every now and then it’s incredibly healthy to unplug.

4. Read your bible

Your body and your mind are subject to your spirit. Your external world will be the fruit of your internal word. Strengthening your spirit is where everything begins and is done by digesting the word of God (aka the Bible).

5. Have a hobby

Ever wonder why the best ideas come in the shower? It’s because whilst you’re away from work, your subconscious mind has space to chew things over. Hobbies create this space for us. Plus it’s just fun. Life is too short not to enjoy it.

6. Practice gratitude

Choosing to keep an open heart and a grateful perspective will shape the life you live. Good and bad will find its way to us but your attitude will determine how you handle them both.

7. Prefer others

Human beings have a natural tendency to turn inwards. But all sense of fulfilment and purpose is always found in serving others. Make this a staple and you’ll find a great sense of meaning.

8. Learn to say no

Highly successful people understand that saying yes to everything is always saying no to something else. If I take every business opportunity then eventually I will be saying no to spending time with my family. It’s ok to pick and choose. Be kind, be firm but have good boundaries.

9. Clock when you make excuses

Becoming self-aware enough to notice your flaws and idiosyncrasies is not about beating yourself up but calling yourself to a higher level. Pay attention to what you excuse and be deliberate about changing your internal narrative.

10. Take time to reflect regularly

Reflection is an important regular practice that allows you to pay attention to what’s going on inside of you. Left unchecked, emotional drama can burst upon us when we least expect us. It’s natural to get a few knocks and bumps in life. So create space to process these things well instead of just hurrying to the next thing.

11. Ask the right questions

Not everything in life is black and white. And there aren’t always answers for everything. Curiosity is an essential trait for success and a posture of question asking will always leave you with options.

12. Do the things you've been avoiding

Often we are held back by tiny little decisions or weaknesses. If you can hold yourself accountable and deal with these small issues then you’ll feel so much better. Imagine how good you’ll feel when you finally get that thing done. It’s never as a big as we make it out to be in our minds.

The Sticky Social Content Formula

A comprehensive online course for church leaders & teams exploring how to leverage social media to help fulfil their mission. This is all about learning how to reach more people and see more impact in the digital space. Get your digital copy today.

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How to have a healthier relationship with your phone

Let’s be honest, many of us are addicted to our devices. The compulsion to check the notification. The rinse and repeat cycle of app checking. Just one more hilarious short form piece of video content.

You’re not alone – this stuff is designed to be addictive and it takes strong discipline to survive in the 21st century (without becoming a hermit).

But the easiest way to create discipline is simply to change the design of your environment.

So how do we have a healthier relationship with our phones?

1. Leave it in a drawer at the end of the work day

Out of sight, out of mind goes the saying. And it really is true in this case. We can break the cycle of checking by literally removing the temptation to do so. When checking your phone requires you to get up, climb some stairs, open a door, travel across a room and open a drawer, we find that laziness can actually work for us instead of against us.

2. Turn off all of your phone notifications (apart from calls)

Notifications are annoying and generally don’t serve us. Every time you break your focus to check your phone, you are conditioning yourself to be distracted and grow your inability to do deep work. Besides, who is in charge anyways? You or your phone?

When you turn off notifications, you notice something very strange – that which once was urgent is suddenly not urgent at all. And you now have space to focus on the important.

There are some jobs where this is not possible. E.g. being on call as a doctor. But for most knowledge workers, the need to be permanently available is a myth. Have the necessary conversations with colleagues and leadership.

3. Don't use your phone as an alarm clock (just buy one)

Using your phone as an alarm clock makes it very easy to start the day on social media instead of exercise, prayer or all the other things you’d actually like to e doing. You actually don’t need to use your phone as an alarm clock – just spend £10 and get one. (Alternatively once you have kids, you don’t need alarm clocks anyways).

4. Put it across the room (or in a different room) when you sleep)

Sleeping next to your phone is such a bad idea. Ever wonder why you check your phone first thing in the morning and last thing at night? Yeah that’s why.

Blue light (from your phone) is bad for sleep. And I find that thinking short-term first thing in the day sets me up for a shallow day.

5. Turn it off for 24 hours every week

If the idea of turning off your phone for 24 hours each week freaks you out then I have some good and bad news for you.

The bad news is that you have an addiction. The good news is that now you know about it.

One way to switch gears is to reverse the psychology. Instead of thinking about when you don’t get to use your phone, think about allowing yourself to have it for six days per week.

I use this technique during the day to have intense bursts of time on social media. Better to schedule 2 hours to be on Instagram than to let it creep into all day.

6. Take a book everywhere you go instead

The problem with phone addiction is not just the interaction with your device but also what it causes you to miss out on. This is what we call opportunity cost. What if we took all of that additional unnecessary time and invested it into reading (or whatever else you’d like to!)

I’ve found that taking a book with me greatly helps in those moments are waiting between appointments or moments.

The Sticky Social Content Formula

A comprehensive online course for church leaders & teams exploring how to leverage social media to help fulfil their mission. This is all about learning how to reach more people and see more impact in the digital space. Get your digital copy today.

Discover more