Amy Rees Anderson

“First we make our habits, then our habits make us.”

“First we make our habits, then our habits make us.” – Charles Noble.  How true it is! And so often we talk about trying to change our bad habits, but rarely do we talk about starting good habits. I have learned that focusing on the positive is much more effective for me than focusing on the negative, so rather than discussing giving up our bad habits in life I want to discuss how we can start Good Habits instead. Plus, it has been said that the best way to eliminate a bad habit is to replace it with a good one, so we can kill two birds with one stone people!! (disclaimer: no actual birds will be killed with a stone in today`s blog) :)…….

Studies show it takes 21 days to form a new habit.  21 days.  You can do ANYTHING for 21 days if you simply set your resolve that you are going to do it!  Don’t give yourself an out.  Take a calendar and highlight 21 days for your habit to form and mark each day off as you accomplish it.   Another thing that can help is to write down a list of benefits you will get from the new habit you start.  For example, if it’s eating healthy you can write down things like:  Looking better, fitting my cute skinny jeans again, having more energy, etc.  Writing down the benefits will serve as good motivation for you to keep on track for the 21 day period.  Set little rewards for yourself when you hit milestones within the 21 days, for example, at day 5 I get this prize and at day 10 I get this, all the way to day 21 when I get to buy a new wardrobe for myself :), etc.   These are just little tricks to help you as you establish your new habits.

I know because I recently tried this for myself when I set the goal to start the habit of healthy eating.  I have never ever been a healthy eater.  Fact is that I LOVE McDonald’s happy meals and truth be told I would be perfectly happy living off of them for every meal….after all they are called a “happy” meal and who doesn’t like that?!  But for those of you who follow my blog I publicly stated in a March blog that I was turning over a new leaf and going on a healthy eating kick and guess what?? I did it!  And as of today I have officially lost over 20 pounds so far!   And today I was able to fit into my skinny jeans that I haven’t been able to wear in years and years!  YIPEEE! I tell you this because forming a new habit works – it really does! And I used all the tips above to help me do it, so I know for sure they work!

If you are wondering what new habits you might want to form, I found a list of ideas for fabulous habits people might want to implement.

EXCELLENT HABITS TO DEVELOP:  (by D. Gibson)

1. Habitually think the best of the people you care about.

2. Habitually find the positive side of any equation.

3. Habitually set up a time to read more, grow more, learn more — every day or several times a week.

4. Habitually treat people better — make it a personal standard.

5. Habitually look for the beauty in the world around you.

6. Habitually clean up your language.

7. Habitually do things to take care of your physical self (a challenge for most of us, if there ever was one).

8. Habitually save money.

9. Habitually start looking for new opportunities around you.

10. Habitually make the most of every day.

11. Habitually plan your day or your week, and follow the plan.

12. Habitually take stock of your successes and your needs.

13. Habitually love your family — and spend time with them.

I think it would be great if we all implemented every single one of these as habits in our lives, but each of us should decide ourselves which we want to implement and at what pace.  But if we all did at least one of these as a new habit in our lives to start with and work up from there, we will make huge progress!  So let’s all take the new habit challenge and then 22 days from now let’s share examples of our experiences.  It will be fun to learn about how the experience was for everyone and the success we found by taking the challenge.  It is so motivating to work on new habits together!

Here is to a FANTASTIC Wednesday!

~Amy

1 Comment

  • J'Aime MacPherson says:

    I’m putting it out there now so I am accountable for this challenge. I’m lazy and hate cooking so every time my husband and I get hungry we just go out and get food. It’s unhealthy and the cost really adds up. These next 21 days I am setting a goal to only allow myself to go out once a week, if not than never. My sister is coming into town so I know we will go to a restaurant to eat I’m sure but other than that I will cook more at home and I am leaving my wallet at home when I go to work so I don’t buy anything at work; I’m forced to pack a lunch. I’ll share my results in the next 21 days. 🙂

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