Friday, January 21, 2011

Habit Forming

January 21, 2011.

Today marks the end of the third week of this still-new year. I heard once that a new habit forms after 21 days of repetition. Have you developed any new habits yet this year? Are you still putting one foot in front of the other?

Today probably already marks the end of new year resolutions for some. Exercise? Perhaps new gym members are already beginning to decline in their workout regimen. Diets? Well, let's be honest: did yours last even until the second week?

I wonder if breaking a bad habit takes the same effort as creating a new habit. I have been trying to break the habit of biting my lip for years, and have only rarely gotten past day 1. Started again this week, and can't make it more than six hours. That's discouraging, but I will prevail sooner or later.

Are you wondering about my new "clean counter" habit? I knew you were. I did not start that on the first day of the year, but today does mark two weeks of success. I sense success with this, and it motivates me to continue my efforts. Here, a quick photo of how it looks right now:

This uncluttered state singlehandedly contributes VOLUMES to my well of peacefulness at any given time throughout the day. I so want this to be a new normal.

How do you fare with your resolutions, your goals for 2011? Did you set a One Word? How has it spoken to to you in the past three weeks?

My Word is Drink. I have determined to drink deeply from God's well this year.

In the past three weeks I have finished my goal of reading through the Bible in 90 days. What a sense of accomplishment that has given me! Even more, though, it has affected the way I view the world. It has upended my priorities, challenged me to see beyond the mundane of the life I currently lead. The habit of reading 12 chapters a day became enjoyable, something after which I thirst. So I started over in Genesis the next day.

In the past three weeks, I have set a new goal of memorizing the book of Colossians this year. Tomorrow is recitation day for week three. I have found myself reaching for my memory book first thing in the morning, perusing it over my coffee, making sure I have it when I travel out of the house. So far, this new habit has stuck.

With a clean kitchen counter and God's word running through my mind, I gradually find I have time again for my default pursuit, writing.

Today I begin again with a long-term writing goal. I have set myself a goal of presenting a book proposal at a conference in July. I am a little nervous to share this with you, as you might hold me to it! But transparency and accountability are two of my highest values. I hope to follow through on this goal, and will be using habit-forming techniques to get there.

Will keep you up to date with my progress.

How are you doing with your habit forming, this January 21?


  1. "I have set myself a goal of presenting a book proposal at a conference in July."

    Me too! At least, it is something that I would like to do, anyway. It's not anything I have "declared and decreed" that I am going to do, but it has been in my mind and heart to do it. Maybe I'll see you there!

  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog today!

    How wonderful that you are wanting to propose a book this summer!!! How cool! What's the book about? I can't wait to read about your progress!

    I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

    Blessings to you,
    Kate :)


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