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The No-Sit Rule

Jerry Zhang
Jerry Zhang

1 min read

I had a lousy 2020 holiday season when it comes to my habits. My brother came home from college (very welcome for my fun, but not my habits), and I faced some other distractions in life. Of course, none of them are valid excuses.

When things died down a bit, I decided it was time to get back on track. But having not followed the Double 9-5 Rule for 2 whole months, I was having trouble getting back into it.

I finally settled on what I call The No-Sit Rule. Here's how it works.

  • At 5 am, my two alarms that I placed far away from my bed go off, and my lights automatically turn on (thank you, smart switches).
  • I must get up in order to silence the alarms to not disturb others.
  • I'm not allowed to sit-down until I finish the rest of the things in this list.
  • Make my bed.
  • Weigh myself.
  • Put on clothes.
  • Drink water.
  • Download my 15-20 minute podcast.
  • Shave, brush teeth, and wash face.
  • Exit my bedroom.
  • Go outside and run 2 miles.
  • Come back home and clear the dishes from the drying rack.
  • Finally, if I wish, I'm allowed to sit down.

This stupidly simple rule of not allowing myself to sit down until I finish all these tasks has been surprisingly effective, and I've kept this streak up for 3 weeks as of this writing.

I'm not yet sure on whether or not the effects are temporary. Time will tell. But at least for my morning, this has been a miracle in terms of effectiveness and productivity!


Jerry Zhang

Programmer, YouTuber, and amateur musician. I like to write too!