Habits, habits, habits ....
I shared in my FitGym this morning how to create a new habit as there is a misconception that habits take 21 days to create.
Do you know where this "general rule of thumb" came from? It actually came from a study in the 1970's where plastic surgeons studied how long it took for someone to recognize their "new nose" as their nose and forgot about the previous nose. It took patients approximately 21 days to replace the memory of their old nose. This is NOT a habit.
Habits actually take about 66 days to create. This is why New Years Resolutions do NOT work. We make a list of 5 or more things and give up shortly after because our list isn't realistic and we cannot execute on all of the items on the list for 66 days! We should ONLY be picking ONE HABIT to focus on at a time and work on that habit for 66 days. Once we have mastered that habit, then add in a new one and stick to that for 66 days. This means we can work on 5 new habits a year.
When quarantine life hit, I had "extra" money - our trips were cancelled and refunded, I was saving $500 per month on gas, plus my job didn't stop. So I found myself doing things to make my 1600 sq.ft. townhome more enjoyable for the 5 of us living here. I turned our deck into a little oasis with a couch and a firepit. I added curtains / sheers to help with the appeal of the living room & kitchen but also to help my kids sleep better. I converted my garage in to a gym with funky LED lights. Amazon was literally open ALL OF THE TIME and clicking purchase became almost a daily thing.
Near the end of May, I decided to have a NO SPEND June. The only money spent in June would be Groceries & Gas. That's it. The kids were on board ... and up until today, I've done really well - now I find myself having to spend almost $500 on new smoke detectors for my place and it is killing me (ok - maybe a bit dramatic, but it's hard to have to put that $$ out when I have this gas & groceries commitment I've been working on).
Have you ever noticed that when you make a plan, start working on your plan, feel good about your plan and then LIFE HAPPENS?? Something pops up to test us. A road block sends us on a detour.
We have a choice at this moment (we always have a choice) - we can either accept the "detour" and hop back on the plan or we throw in the towel and say "fuck it"? This is where I find myself today.
I will accept the detour (begrudgingly of course) and hop back on the plan because ultimately, I know how I want to feel and that is what fuels me with all of my habits. This is my advice or words of wisdom for you today - there will always be "tests" along the way. Will you choose to react to the moment and give in or will you choose to focus on how you want to feel at the end and persevere?
Persevere my friends - your future self will thank you - this I can say from many years of experience!