I read somewhere, probably the internet so it must be true, that it takes 30 days to form a habit. Depending on the intensity/enjoyment of the habit it may take less. For example eating a Boston Crème Dunkin Donut may take 4 days to become a habit, whereas getting up at 6:30am for a morning jog may take 30 maybe 40 days. Anyhow, below are a few small habits that could have a positive and lasting effect.
1. The grocery list– Seems simple to stop in the store for just a few things and end up at the checkout aisle with a cart full of stuff you didn’t intend on getting but looked good. You ever hear people remark “it’s all up here” while pointing to their head? So is everything else and it gets crowded, so bring a list. I recently went into the store for half and half…$79 later and the clincher- I forgot the half and half. Also, be sure to eat before you go so it’s easier to resist temptation.
2. Measure your steps– As vast majorities of people lead very sedentary lives. There is a lack of daily mobility with walking in particular. You are considered “active” if you get between 5,000 to 8,000 steps measured on a pedometer daily-most only do about 3,500. So test yourself. Clip a pedometer to the hip of your jeans or slacks, and without changing your routine, see where you measure up. If it’s in the 3,500 range or lower, challenge yourself to increase that number every day until you’re at or over 10,000 steps, which is about 5 miles. Share it with your co-workers and have a contest. The one with the most steps come Friday at 5pm gets a free Starbucks Coffee on Monday. Pedometers nowadays are so cheap, you could pick one up at Target for about $5.
3. Get Your H20 Early– Now there’s a lot of people that don’t enjoy plain old water. We all know the benefits of drinking water: cures dehydration and promotes clear skin, aides in the relief of headaches, refreshing after a strenuous activity, etc. A good way to get ready for a day of getting your 8 glasses of water? Start when you first wake up. Before you eat breakfast, take a shower or get dressed, head to the kitchen and get a cold glass of water. You’ll begin to crave water as you go about your day especially if you consume drinks like coffee which dehydrate you.
So try these for the next month and see how you feel. Soon these will be solid habits you no longer have to think about and will just be second nature. It’s about making small changes, as we all know there’s a lot we could improve, but all in due time.