You and I each have tens of thousands of thoughts per day—some estimates claim as many as 60,000! Think about that for a moment (no pun intended). Really think about that. It raises some questions, doesn't it? For example, how is it that you can have 60,000 thoughts every day and still have trouble finding solutions to your problems? You'd think a solution would be in there somewhere—we're talking one thought every one and a half seconds! The answer is this: Almost all of your thoughts today are the same ones you had yesterday.

In fact, it's estimated that 90–95% of everything we think and do is habit. So, in a way, our habits are controlling us. How does that feel, to think of yourself as controlled? Not very good, does it?

If we want to be in control of our lives, and habits are controlling us, then we must control our habits. The key to creating and breaking habits is daily consistency. That may sound difficult, but I'll tell you a secret...although it's important to take action every day, you don't have to spend a lot of time each day. Daily consistency at any level of performance will build the habits that you need, to create the life that you want. Even just five minutes a day is enough.

Let me give you an example:

A friend of mine wanted to get in the habit of running for a half an hour every day. I can tell you from experience, that's not an easy habit to create. But my friend noticed that the biggest obstacle for him was overcoming inertia and actually getting out of the house. Once he was outside, running didn't seem like a big deal. So he decided that each day, at a minimum, he would put on his exercise clothes, go outside, and touch his feet to the street—no excuses. And if he didn't want to run at that point, he could go back inside and still feel good about himself.

You see, he made it easy to overcome the obstacle of getting started. And in those first few months of building his habit, he only went back inside without running a handful of times. But I would argue, even if he'd gone for the run less than half of the time, that still would've been the right first step because it got him started. Just get out of the house, and I promise that you'll run more often than you would have otherwise.

Let me give you some more examples:

* Achieving Goals
Writing for five minutes a day at a rate of thirty words per minute will produce a 180-page draft of a book by the end of one year. How many books did you write last year?

* Exercise Habits
If you run for five minutes a day for a year, you'll have run the equivalent of 7 marathons. How many marathons did you run last year?

* Personal Growth Habits
If you were to read for an extra five minutes each day, you will have read 4–8 more books by the end of the year. How might reading 4–8 more books per year impact your life and your business?

What new and powerful habits might you have right now if you'd started creating them a year ago? Do you want another year to go by without those habits?

If this five-minute concept intrigues you, then I challenge you to try it out for yourself and see how well it works. Create and commit to a daily No-Excuse Minimum—something that's so simple and requires so little time each day that you have absolutely no excuse to skip it. Before you know it, you'll have made it a habit.

Author's Bio: 

Curtis G. Schmitt, the founder of Turn On to Life!, is a Life/Habit Coach who specializes in helping busy people reclaim their time and their bodies. For a free report on the power of habits, visit FiveMinutesADay.com.