Joy Journal

Every Friday, you can receive the Joy Journal, which will give you information, inspiration and tips that you can use in your pursuit for joy.


66 Days

You Are What You Repeat

New Year’s Resolutions are fundamentally a desire to establish a new habit for yourself, and the beginning of a new year provides the feeling of making a fresh start. All of the newsletters this month have had this “fresh start” kind of focus – word for the year, willpower and now habit formation.
Those of you who make a habit of forming new or nurturing existing habits may be aware of the common statistic that says it takes 21 days to form a new habit. So by today, January 22, if you diligently stuck to your new year’s resolution, you should have a new habit by now. Bam!
In reality, most habits take at least 66 days to create and really tough ones can take up to a year. I was very surprised to learn this. I suppose 21 days feels much more doable, so many of the self-help gurus grabbed onto the short end of the spectrum to make more headlines.
Some easy habits, e.g., drinking an extra glass of water a day, can form within 21 days, but if you are reaching for something more challenging, please avoid feeling like a failure if you haven’t reach habit-level change by today. Instead, mark your calendar for March 7 – that will be 66 days. You have 45 more days to make your desired change/new habit a reality.

(Kashy, Quinn & Wood 2002)

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