Habits, discipline and writing

When I look at few of the blogs I follow, I see that people are diligent enough to do a post in a day or there is some sort of routine to it. While I struggle to keep up my thinking especially for writing, this week’s Braink pickings weekly digest has a post dedicated to  habit formation and how to make good ones stick. This post looks at Jeremy Dean’s new book on habits: Making Habits, Breaking Habits: Why We Do Things, Why We Don’t, and How to Make Any Change Stick   and a peak into the research that has gone behind it.

Jeremy Dean is a psychologist who currently works as a researcher in University of London and he also runs the psychology blog: psyblog.co.uk, now available at a new url: spring.org.uk  .


I seem to have a propensity to read only if there is something beneficial to be drawn from reading. When I mean beneficial : change in my person, improvement in certain skill sets and the kind. I do not seem to really understand what is the pleasure of reading, like I understand what pleasure does drawing, painting, singing or photgraphy gives. That way this book seems to address some fundamental issues like nonsticky habits.

So I will read this book and try to see if it can help few habits stick. The habits that I wish stuck to me are: writing diary daily, at least one post on TMN every week and running in the mornings.

This experimentation with the book at least will make a good reason to take notes from my experience on TMN regularly.

“Excellence … is not an act but a habit.” – Aristotle

And if Aristotle were right, I should be excellent, had I to succeed in my habit experimentation.


2013 : The year that was

It has been more than 4 months since I wrote any post. Most of what I wrote in 2013  have been in spurts. A period of writing followed by a lull and lull alone! I maintain an idea notebook especially for TMN, where I keep writing down things I want to write about. But I ended up writing none of them. This year, I resolve to write at least once in a week. 🙂

2013, has been a rewarding  year in which work has begun to take a new shape and some major shifts in ways we function.

A pontoon bridge with pilgrims flowing across the river,Kumbh Mela

Along with a year long consulting with a water agency, we did assignments that were interesting, meaningful and some ways different. We documented Maharashtra drought and how people faired on the ground, we were at the Kumbh Mela to study the overall sanitation situation and how a particular product worked, we also took up Disaster Risk Reduction analysis of WASH situation in Odisha post Phailin.

One of the water tankers criss-crossing the dry and parched landscapes of Maharashtra, during the peak of drought in summer 2013

A village devastated by cyclone Phailin in Ganjam district, Odisha

We also took up some work outside the WASH space. This was an exciting bit for me personally because the thought of expanding our work into other areas of development has been on my mind for a year now. We worked on legal data analysis and we closed the year with a new assignment working on a land governance project.

With all this work came a lot of traveling which was all the more rewarding. Year 2014, we look forward to having a firm incorporated, work on more consulting projects and do some actual enterprising projects. Consulting has been paying our bills and has facilitated a lot of understanding of real issues contexts. Its time we shift gears and start participating in real development as entrepreneurs.