Making a change to your life — whether it’s how you eat, work, or play — is always going to be hard. If you’re going to try to form a new habit, aim to do it for a month. That will give you enough time to determine how well the change fits with your life.
Photo by Flickr, Dafne Cholet.
What we’ve discovered is that once we commit to anything for a full month, it’s actually rather straightforward to just keep on doing it. There’s something about the month timeframe that feels very doable at the outset, but that’s long enough to actually ingrain a habit.
A week is way too short, and a year feels like an impossible eternity. I can’t tell you how many habits we’ve changed/broken/created through our one-month test horizon. And if you seriously hate the results after a month, go back and recalibrate the decisions.
Of course, being consistent with a lifestyle change is always the hardest part However, if you’re giving yourself a month-long time frame to begin with, it’s easier to stomach the change. You can also use that time to determine if you really want to live this way.
Maybe you want to work out more, but decide after a month that going to the gym isn’t for you. There are very few habits that you can stick to for a month without figuring out whether you’re really happier living that way.