July 31, 2012


Habits are on my mind. This summer, I joined a local team for the a 4-month bike challenge on Endomondo. The idea: to get more people on bikes for commutes, exercise, or transport. For years, Mark has encouraged me to ride everywhere possible (he commutes to work each day and longs to have our car sit idly in the garage). During the summer, I typically bike a lot, but not everywhere. So I joined this challenge and guess what? I'm biking everywhere. Most days our car sits idly in the garage-- a new (and very positive) habit formed by this challenge. 

My friend Wendy hosts a yearly February Challenge (as she says, it's only 28 days, but that's all we need to form better habits). Five years ago I took on eating 9 servings of fruits and veggies a day. It was a low-stakes challenge--I wasn't really accountable to anyone (just like the bike challenge), yet I did it. And now I never go a day without at least the minimum suggestion of 5 servings of fruit-and-veggie goodness.

Interesting how (relatively) easy it was to form and hold onto these healthful habits (and many others). Yet what about my daily meditation practice? That formed and then went away. Or the 28-day yoga challenge I joined, yet didn't follow through on? Why do some habits stick and others flutter away? Flutter away even when I know they are in my best interest? Not sure. But perhaps there are only so many habits I can hold onto; only so many changes I can make during a certain period. And perhaps soon there may be space for more. Perhaps tomorrow will begin my daily meditation habit. Or not. (The beating-myself-up habit is one I'm gradually trying to break.)

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