Debbie Reynolds September contest has challenged me to re-form a habit. Blogging! Let's see if this will be the push I need to jump back in!
Years ago I'd heard that it just took 7 days to form a habit. More recently, I read a book entitled "The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg that claimed 21 days is the magic number for making a habit stick. I'm more inclined to believe that the lower number is likely about a starting a bad habit, and the larger one about getting a good one to take hold, or gettting rid of a bad one!
Good Habit- Tracking. I've been fairly good in some areas, but much was in need of improvement. One thing that really bothered me, is that it felt as if I was working all of the time. If business was slow, I was compelled to work even harder to get it going. If it was brisk, I was exhausted. So I started tracking the hours that I work every day. That helped me feel less guilty about leisure and personal time. Looking at this over the course of a year helped me see that I was keeping things in better balance for my health and family. Even accounting for vacations, I still average more than I did in my corporate work days, but as most Realtors would attest, the lines between business and personal are often blurred. I've done this tracking now for nearly 3 years, and I doubt is this a habit I could break, even if I tried.
Bad Habit- Diet Coke. It was such a habit, that a little craving alarm would go off daily in my head around 11:00. I had just one a day, but it bothered me that it was so strong an urge. I kicked it several times, only to restart again. Then earlier this year I read an article linking diet soda to Alzeimer's. That did it for me. With a family history of the disease, and my Dad a victim of it now, that was the monumental punch I needed to eliminate this from my liquid intake.
Ugly Habit- Worrying. I come from a long line of worriers. And while I wasn't obssessive about it, I was aware of it. I noticed the negative effect it had on two family members who are master worriers, and I didn't want to get to that point myself. So I made a concious decision to just STOP. Let life unfold, and not try to control or redirect it. Let go, let God.
Something amazing happened. I slept better. I was calmer (not calm mind you, I'm still very type A). I had more energy. And the best part? I had better internal resources to find creative solutions to whatever it was that was amiss, but more often than not, the issue seemed to have worked itself out.
Thanks for the push Debbie!