“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.”–Aristotle
People are sometimes amazed by the word count I lay down every day. Some of that can be attributed to the fact that writing is my full-time job, and I devote significant amounts of time to it. A lot of my productivity, though, is the result of developing routines. I write every day. I write whether I have a project or not. I write whether I have a deadline or not. I write whether what I write is going to be “usable” or not. Starting with the habit of writing, I developed other routines, other habits, to keep me focused, eliminate distractions, and provide me with blocks of time to be immersive in my writing.
Think of it this way: a runner does not start off running a marathon. You start off running a little bit, every day, and build. You find out what works, what supports your goals, and do more of that. You figure out what slows you down, what holds you back, and you avoid or do less of that. You create habits.