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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

21 days to make a habit

Studies have shown that it takes about 21 days to break or form a new habit. Personally, I think 30 days is a good, round number, and gets any last stubborn resistance out. :) Think about that. 30 days from now, you could have a new habit you've been talking or thinking about forever and not really doing anything about. It just takes a little bit of action every day. Chris McCombs, a self-styled fitness business mentor, talks about taking "massive action". That's awesome, and hey, if you can do that, go for it. Personally, I believe in small, sustainable steps. Trying to do too much all at once tends to result in getting overwhelmed and backtracking as fast as possible to return to one's comfort zone - the old habits you've been stuck in forever. So aim for balance. Challenge yourself, but don't expect to reach perfection in 30 days.

I'm thinking about this concept because I'm participating in Jeanette Cates' 30 Day Blog Challenge. I'm supposed to write a new blog post every day of 150 or more words and then post it to Twitter. I've had this blog for awhile and it's not like it's *hard* for me to write - I was an English major! (Don't use that to judge my grammatical errors and typos, please!) I just haven't made a conscious effort to form the habit of writing in it on a daily or almost daily basis. By doing this I hope to get some good, informative writing done, make more connections and ultimately identify some more people who can benefit from training with me and want to take that step. So, while I'm working on this blog thing, why don't you think about trying to form a habit over the next 30 days. Maybe it's drinking your 8 glasses of water, or walking for 20 minutes a day, or changing the way you talk about your body from negative to positive. Maybe it's increasing your endurance until you can finally run an entire mile without stopping. Or maybe it's replacing a big bowl of ice cream for dessert with fruit. Maybe it has nothing to do with your physical health and fitness, and that's fine too. But pick something you've been meaning to do for awhile and take a little action on it every day for the next month. You've got nothing to lose, and plenty to gain!

1 comment:

  1. This is great advice. Moreover, it rings true--at least, anything I've done consistently for 21 days is likely to have become habitual for me. The trick is being consistent for that long. :-)

    But you're right--starting is the thing!