Please Note: I started my 100 Days Challenge on May 25, 2010 but you can start any time. I hope you'll join me in working towards positive change. My original post on my 100 Days Challenge will explain what I am doing and how I chose my challenge.
Today is day 14 of my personal challenge ... two weeks completed and I am still struggling to make this small change a habit in my life. Who knew that changing the first 10 to 15 minutes of my day could be so tough? Each morning I find myself struggling to get through my stretches and exercises even though I can feel the benefits already. My knee, which was troubling me almost daily, is beginning to feel better and stronger from the stabilizing exercises I do as part of my morning "habit."
Why is this small change such a challenge? I really looked at this for myself since what I have chosen would seem to be a much easier change than someone trying to quit smoking, follow a restrictive diet, sew every day, exercise one hour every day, etc. Am I really this weak willed? The answer I came up with is "NO!"
I am working to change a habit I've had since childhood. What? Yes, you read that correctly. Almost every morning of my life, I have gotten up at the last possible moment, whether the alarm goes off at 4:00 am or 9:00 am. No matter what time I have had to get up, I get up at the last possible moment to get ready for the day. As I have always been a night owl, even as a little girl, waking up has often been irksome to me and I do not consider myself a morning person.
In other words, I am trying to change behavior that I have practiced and reenforced for more than 25 years. When I look at it that way I realize that this IS a real challenge and that I should not condemn myself for how I am struggling with it.
It is amazing to me how I resist this challenge some mornings. I mean, this is only 10 to 15 minutes out of my day. Yet, I have found myself delaying and trying to find excuses for not doing it. I don't think this is about will power. I think this is an example of how the brain works and how it seeks to continue the activities and behaviors that have become habitual.
(BTW - I'm talking to myself as well.)
The good news: I have only missed two days out of the fourteen, which I consider a good beginning.
I found a few articles on breaking bad habits that, I believe, offer good advice and insights:
The bottom line is I just have to keep doing what I'm doing and not get frustrated. There are many habits I would like to break or change but I need to continue with this one and really make sure it is established as a habit before trying to work on the next one.
I can do it! You can do it! We can do it!