Wednesday, February 22, 2012

How Many Days to a "Habit?"

I once read that it takes between two to three weeks to form a new habit.

I contend that this is only true for things we find unpleasant. For example: it would definitely take me three weeks of cleaning up dog-doo every day at the same time for it to be something that I do as a matter of course. But it took me approximately two days to form the "habit" of drinking a homemade latte every morning. And boy is that habit awesome.

There are a whole pile of things in my life that I would like to make habits of. Many of them are things that should already be habits but are not -- like wearing a watch so that we aren't constantly running just a tiny bit late. Or like spending at least 10 minutes a day reading to David and at least 10 minutes a day teaching him something.

You would not believe how much trouble I have making those happen.

You'd also be surprised by how much those two things - wearing a watch and working with David - go together. Every day I think "This morning we will sit down and talk about the letter "A" and then we will read a book!" And every day I get sucked into work or house keeping and then, before I know it, we are 15 minutes from having to leave for whatever appointment or play date or thing we have scheduled. The time always escapes me. And the person who suffers is always my sweet boy.

Today I made yet another attempt at starting those two habits. As soon as he got out of bed I put on my watch. I made sure that a good hour before we had to leave for his craft time at the post YMCA we were sitting at his little table, talking about the letters A, B and C. Then we colored some pictures, then we did some puzzles.

It was nice.

When we got home from craft time/a stop at the playground, we read some books before his nap.

And what do you know, I still managed to get done everything I would've done with that 40 extra minutes I dedicated to my little man.

(I feel like such a bad mommy).

Habit Day 1 - done.

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