While driving home from the gym a few days ago, I thought about how glad I was that I had gotten out of bed and gone. With snow and ice covering up nearby sidewalks and walkways, plus an intense cold snap earlier in the month, I had not been walking or running outside. Instead, I had been “trying” to go to the gym a little more frequently, but there were several occasions where, although I had planned to get up and go, I ended up staying in bed.

On that drive home from the gym, it occurred to me that not only was I glad I had gotten up and gone that morning, but I couldn’t remember a single time when this wasn’t the case. Whenever I had gotten up early in the past and gone, afterward I was always glad I had. Now, if I end up being glad I did something every single time I’ve done it in the past, it seems like it would be easier to keep doing it. And yet there are still days I struggle with whether I should go. I wonder: How many other things in my life are like that—things that, when I do them, I’m always glad I did, and yet I still struggle to do them consistently?

Because if there are practices in my life that can have such a positive effect every single time, it seems like it would be worth the effort to make a habit of doing them. Developing new habits takes time and diligence and is not always easy. But once I form a habit, not only would I continue to enjoy the benefits from whatever I was habitually doing, but it should be easier to deal with the periodic struggle over whether or not to stick with the practice on a particular day. Because regardless of whether I “know” something will be good for me, sometimes I’ll still default to whatever I’ve trained myself to do. But if the habits I end up defaulting to are the ones I’ve intentionally chosen—ones that have a track record of positive results time after time after time—then even on off days, I have a better chance of doing something that later I’ll be glad I did.

Question: Are there things in your life that, when you do them, you’re always glad you did?