Have you heard of a NonZero Day? It means setting a goal for yourself and doing at least one small thing, each day, to move you toward your goal. That means never having a Zero day, a completely unproductive day, again. The concept is springing up across the internet, starting with Reddit, and showing up in blog posts and business discussions. The NonZero Day has become a thing.

The act of doing something every day toward a particular goal brings the goal into your consciousness. Through that constant repetition, you’re reinforcing that goal and making it part of your reality. The more we practice, the stronger our synaptic connections become. Then, the information is more easily engrained, thereby bringing success.

You don’t have to write the great American novel or cure the common cold or lose 20 pounds all in one day. But depending upon your chosen goal, you can commit to writing one sentence or reading one piece of pertinent research or doing three sit-ups. Whatever your goal might be, you take incremental steps toward it, even on what you might otherwise have considered to be unproductive days—do it anyway!

Many people report that incorporating the notion of NonZero Days into their lives helps them remove the guilt and stress that de-motivates them. Jordanna Rowan, a blog coach for creative entrepreneurs, explains how NonZero Days help manage chronic feelings of self-loathing. Rowan says, “You will find that getting that first One under your belt becomes a habit, and when a task becomes habit, your fears, anxieties, and self-doubts begin to slip away.”

If you’re in the middle of a quiet Sunday, having achieved nothing whatsoever, make yourself responsible for doing at least one thing that points your life in the right direction. I, for instance, have the goal of improving my spiritual balance and peace of mind. And so every day I make sure I do one thing to bring me towards that goal. For example, some days I will write in my journal, spend time in nature or take a walk around the block.

Many people judge themselves when they feel like they haven’t accomplished enough in a single day. Somehow, if they haven’t moved a whole mountain, the day was a failure. NonZero Days aren’t about judging yourself; instead, they’re a mechanism to help you get to your goal. It boils down to a combination of self-motivation and self-acceptance. You can motivate yourself to meet your goals in a consistent way that gains momentum over time. The NonZero Day can also help you keep from berating yourself if you don’t achieve everything at once.

The upshot is this: If you don’t fully meet all of your goals in the course of one day, don’t waste time scolding yourself for bad behavior. Do one thing to move forward, and feel good about it.

As for me, I like to set an achievable goal, something I can commit to and keep. When I take small steps that move me in the right direction, I feel good.

Please join me in rewiring your own sense of motivation and productivity, by committing to your first of many NonZero Days.

Rose Caiola

Inspired. Rewired.

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