Nowadays, there is pretty much an app for everything you imagine. Visit Google Play Store and then tell me if I´m wrong. But more doesn´t mean better, and a different app for tracking each one of our habits may result overwhelming or counterproductive.
Instead, using a single and versatile app, like Evernote to track your habits may be the right solution in many cases.
As you know (or should know), Evernote is a note-taking app. A digital diary, in a few words. You can use it as your journal, day planner, to keep things that inspire you (like articles, images and social media post) by using Web Clipper, as your to-do list or done list, to take class notes and help you with your homework, plan your travels or your wedding, write a novel, record meetings, save business cards and, as you have seen on this blog, record your workouts or keep your recipes collection.
Keeping everything organizing in the same place saves you lots o time and help you to be more productive. And when it comes to building a new habit the last thing you want is the need to get used to a new app because it doubles your work.
As each note is a blank canvas, you can create whatever you need. That´s why Evernote is great to build new healthy habits or get rid of unhealthy ones.
Let´s not forget that to make sure your goals are clear and reachable, each one should be:
Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
Achievable (agreed, attainable).
Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
Time-bound (time-based, time-limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).
For instance, the healthy habit #1 is drinking more water. You can easily keep track of your daily water intake with Evernote. How?
1 – Create a new notebook (Click on File -> New notebook) and name it My water intake. Click OK.
2 – Click on your new notebook and create a New Note (Ctrl + N) and name it Water intake. You will use this note as a template and this will save you a lot of time.
Let´s say you don´t drink any water at all and you plan to drink 6 glasses of water every day. That´s a Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound goal.
3 – Type numbers from 1 to 6 and then add a checkbox next to each number (Ctrl + Shift + C). Why would you put checkboxes? To mark them every time you drink a glass of water. This ensures you don’t miss a single one.
4 – Duplicate this template as many times as you need (Right-click on the note -> Duplicate Note).
I recommend you to rename each duplicated note with the date and keep the first one as your template. It will take you seconds to create and rename the notes you will use in a week.
Let´s go a step further and suppose you drink too many sodas or beers and you want to reduce the consumption of these drinks by replacing them with water.
Using the same notes, you can keep track of what you drink every day and be conscious if you´re going in the right direction.
Just repeat the step 3 for sodas and beers and voilá! You will be able to easily check the days you did right, the days you did wrong (and also write your comments/excuses why those days didn´t go well), and keep yourself accountable and focused on your goals.
Access your water intake notes on your mobile device by adding a shortcut. An icon will appear on the main screen of your device making your notes just a tap away.
With your note open on your phone or tablet, tap on the menu button (the column of three squares) and then select Create Shortcut.
Your shortcut will appear on the main screen of your mobile device.
You now have a completed and easily accessible habit tracker! Any updates made to a note are synced across all devices once saved.