This habit was the genesis of my morning routine.
I read an interview with Ira Glass about really mundane stuff. Like what he eats for breakfast. As it turns out, he eats the exact same thing every morning. Also, he eats the same thing for lunch every day. Also, he wears pretty much the same outfit every day. How boring.
Well except for the fact that he is the creator of This American Life, deservedly the top podcast in the world.
Ira's breakfast complacency wasn't some quirk of his personality. He wasn't in love with whatever his standard breakfast and lunch were. And actually it wasn't even that he had a strict nutritional plan. It was about limiting choices.
The brain has a limited reserve of energy each day that it can dedicate to choices. The catch is that it doesn't recognize whether a choice is important or not. So if you decide what to have for breakfast, what to wear, what station to listen to, and then in the evening decide whether or not to buy a house, your brain will say, "I don't care. Just pick one."
And you end up getting stuck with a money pit of a home—in part because having a new and exciting every morning is important to you.
Okay, a bit dramatic—but still actually not that far off. In high school I saw an all state athlete who could normally bench 250 get stuck underneath 45lbs (that is after he had lifted it 150 times at the end of a workout). Your brain has limits.
100 years ago this didn't matter.
According to Daniel Levinton, we receive 5 times the amount of information that we received in 1985. As if the 80s weren't overstimulating enough.
Having 2 eggs with siracha and toast every day might seem laughable as a significant exercise, but it is another decision that my brain can put on cruise control. Also, it requires zero mental energy for me to cook perfect over easy eggs at this point. It's just one less thing I have to worry about.