One day in December 2012 when things are little unsettled in life I walk into the office, as usual my day begins at my computer screen. It was all great, until I saw this message:
Your password has expired.
No shit. I thought clicking ‘Change password’ was gonna do something else.
I read this dumb message in my mind: The damn password has expired.
At my workplace, the Microsoft Exchange server is configured to ask thousands of employees around the planet to change their passwords. Every 30-45 days.
Here is the horse-shit: The server forces us to use at least one UPPERCASE character, at least one lowercase alphabetic character, at least one symbol and at least one number. Oh, and the whole damn thing can’t be less than 8 characters.And I can’t use any of the same passwords I’ve used last 15 times.
So there it was… This input field with a pulsating cursor, waiting for me to type a password that I’ll have to re-enter for the next 30-45 days. Many times during the day.
Then, letting all the frustration go, I remembered a tip I heard from my former boss.
I’m gonna use a password to change my life.
With a state of mind I couldn't focus on things. Of course, there were clear indicators of what I needed to do -or what I had to achieve- in order to regain control of my life, but we often don’t pay attention to these clues.
My password became the indicator. My password reminded me that I shouldn’t let myself be victim of recent happening, and that I’m strong enough to do something about it.
My password became: “Willbeok25@march”
I had to type this statement several times a day. Each time my computer would lock. Each time I would come back from break or lunch.
In my mind, I went with the mantra that I didn’t type a password. In my mind, I wrote “Will Be ok by March” everyday, for one month.
That simple action changed the way I looked at my life. That constant reminder that alI should be ok, led me to accept the way things happened.
One month later, my dear exchange server asked me again to renew my password. I thought about the next thing I had to get done.
My password became Startreading24@year. For start reading at least 24 books in a year.
And guess what happened. I star reading and it became my one of the Hobby overnight. When I shared this with one of my friend he took the challenge with password "Quitsmoking@4ever" his password was a painful one to type during that month, but doing it helped him to yell at himself in his mind, as he typed that statement, but the result at the end was he quit smoking.
Now my password is no more system password, it motivated me to follow my monthly goal.
One month later, my password became Save4trip@dubai
Guess where I planned it 7 months later. With savings.
Thank you, password.
So, I learned that I can truly change my life if I play it right. I kept doing this repeatedly month after month, with great results.
Here is an extract of what some of my passwords have been in the last 1.5 years, so you get an idea of how my life has changed, thanks to this method:
willbeok@march← to my situation in life, who started it all. Startreading24@year ← it worked. Save4trip@Dubai ← it worked.Sleep@before11← it worked.No@drinking2months ← it worked.
Booking a car is next on agenda← Yep. Life is gonna change again, soon.
I still await very anxiously each month so I can change my password into something that I need to get done.
This method has consistently worked for me for the last 1.5 years, and I have shared it with a few close friends and relatives. I didn’t think it was a breakthrough in tiny-habits but it did have a great impact in my life, so I thought to share it with you all.
Try it yourself! Write these statements with the right mindset and attitude, and you’ll change your life. Let me know how it works for you!
Remember, for added security, try to be a bit more complex with the words. Add symbols or numbers, or scramble a bit the beginning or the ending of your password string. S4f3ty_f1rst! (Safety_first).
Also, don’t forget the Recommend button.
— Tweet (@arunbais) or email me, and spread the ☺ around.