Use Custom Homepages to Build Routines

Jul 22nd

I recently had a useful web based service built but kept forgetting to use it on a daily basis. I set my IE homepage to that tool so I would remember to use it. Since then it has helped up make some great business decisions (as well as add context showing how good or bad some past decisions were).

I recently added support suite software to this site, but am so used to answering everything through the forum and through email that I do not remember to log-in to the support suite section of the site. I set my Firefox homepage to the support suite ticket page today, and presumably I will remember to look at it every day.

With the rise of Widgets and easy to embed RSS feeds it is easy to give ourselves needed reminders.

Patterns can be hard to break and hard to build, but if we give ourselves cues and reminders change is easier. Now I only need to think up a strategy to start using that elliptical machine that I bought a few weeks back!

Published: July 22, 2008

Comments

July 22, 2008 - 1:21pm

Valid point, Aaron. I have a hard time getting myself out of patterns even after I recognize they aren't the best / most efficient. Often times you simply need to trick yourself into doing it.

I set a LOT of reminders for myself via Google Calendar and on my iPhone calendar. Those help.

I'd liken using an elliptical machine to writing an article on a topic you just don't care about - it's no fun. Uphill all the way. That's why I try to get involved in sports as much as possible, and why I bought a heavy bag for the back yard. Ellipticals are definitely a healthy way to go, but for me getting on something like that every day as opposed to competing in a sport is like pulling teeth. Give me a ball to chase, and I'll run around all day without even realizing it. Give me a topic I love to write about and I'll put together 2,000 words in no time.

July 22, 2008 - 4:07pm

I too prefer tennis or basketball or just about any sport to an elliptical. But I have to use the thing now to justify the price I paid for it. ;)

I also have Wii Fit (and a similar playstation game). Both fun...I just need to stop being lazy with my physical condition.

July 22, 2008 - 2:20pm

Why don't you build yourself an html page with all the things you need to do at the beginning of each day and set that as your homepage?

July 22, 2008 - 4:05pm

I did that in years past Stever. My weird sleeping schedule has been part of the problem with my organization. The other issue is I have added responsibilities and sometimes like to forget how many I keep throwing at myself. ;)

July 25, 2008 - 11:20pm

Hi Aaron,

For regular daily activities, I use a www.Netvibes.com start page. I have it set up with a few widgets.

But the most important use I get out of it is that I've inserted direct links to the pages for all the online services I use. Not only does it organize everything in one place for me, but it serves as quite a helpful reminder of what services I need to check on regularly.

Anita

July 26, 2008 - 1:34pm

Thanks for the suggestion Anita.

August 19, 2008 - 10:48pm

I have put my "check every day" sites into one folder in Firefox and every morning I just click on Open All in Tabs for that folder.

It forces me to check all those pages and I close them as they are checked.

Its a routine that I have now gotten into.

I can't remember where I read this but if you repeat something for 21 days it becomes habit forming. Who knows!

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