The Three Things Rule To Have A Good Day, Explained
Growth

The Three Things Rule To Have A Good Day, Explained

If you’ve been following Nudge › How for a while now, you might already be familiar with what I call the Three Things Rule or Three Good Things. Here’s what it’s all about.

No time? Listen to it instead

If you’ve been following Nudge › How for a while now, you might already be familiar with what I call the Three Things Rule or Three Good Things. I’ve mentioned it on social media and even in blog posts. The idea is to have a good day every day. The process is to do three things every day – one to get your body moving, one to get your mind working, and one to get your heart beating.

It’s a simple idea. That’s why it works. However, I felt that I should elaborate on how I arrived at this, how I use it, examples of those activities and so on. This is partly because a lot of these have become frequently asked questions at this point. Also, I feel it’s an integral part of my system and therefore, deserves its post.

Where Did It Come From?

The Three Things Rule is a polished version of my routine from when I was in college. In my second year, every day after classes, I’d go to the library to read. Then, I’d come home and work on a nanodegree. In the end, I’d do a light workout routine. Eventually, the workout became Freeletics every morning.

During my gap year, I wanted to have the same sort of consistency in my hometown and family home, but that was proving to be complicated. One day, when I was in a café with a friend, I looked to a wall that had three large panels, and somehow had the epiphany.

The Three Things Rule

That’s when I defined it for the first time.

You do three good things every day. One to get your body moving, one to get your mind working, one to get your heart beating. Everything else is extra credit.

Somehow, after this, I could easily carry that routine wherever I went. It has helped me through every tough ordeal in the past few years.

What Do I Do Though?

This is a question I get a lot, to be honest. I mean, the vague three steps are reasonable enough but what are those activities for me. Well, I’ll list out the things I have done as part of each over the years during different phases of my life.

One Thing To Get Your Body Moving

  • Evening Walks
  • Morning Runs
  • Bodyweight HIIT (Freeletics)
  • Soccer
  • Badminton
  • Morning Hikes

One Thing To Get Your Mind Working

  • Minesweeper
  • Sudoku
  • Brain Training (Elevate)
  • Duolingo
  • Courses
  • Data Projects
  • Programming
  • Finances

One Thing to Get Your Heart Beating

  • Coffee with Friends
  • Time with Family
  • Reading
  • Painting
  • Conversation with Strangers
  • Concerts and Gigs
  • Video Games
  • Movies Alone

These are just some things that come to mind and which I do regularly, and which work for me. You can add your own, of course. Some things can flip categories too. Reading can also go to getting your mind working if it’s heavy reading. It’s really all very subjective.

But, Um?

Yes, it’s not a very complex idea, I know. The thing is about consistency.

I’ve had days where I couldn’t do anything to keep my body moving. So, I’d immediately get up and take the trash out. That flight of stairs up and down three stories is enough to add to the body moving list.

I guess you can now see the rule’s intention. It’s not to make habits or even make you achieve something. Rather, it’s to keep you in check.

It’s constantly asking yourself the following.

Are you using the three blessings you have every day? Are you moving? Are you feeling? Are you thinking?

As long as you’re doing that, each day, the place doesn’t matter, the tasks don’t matter, nothing matters. Each day is a good day if you’re able to do all three and acknowledge that you did.

The Three Things Rule is not about productivity. It’s about gratefulness and focus on the right things. It’s on making sure each day is a happy new day.

The Nudge

The Three Things Rule or the Good Day Rule is my approach to making sure I seize each day. It’s less of a rule and more of a roadmap. The activities keep changing. Do three things every day to have a good day: one to get your body moving, one to get your mind working, and one to get your heart beating. Everything else is extra credit. The idea is to look back on each day and have at least one of each activity. It’s about being grateful for life and have awareness of the three abilities: to move, to think and to feel.


Original Featured Photo by Tom Crew on Unsplash.


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