One Habit at a Time

by Deborah Taylor-Hough

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I've been told it takes four to six weeks for any action to become a habit. So, keeping that in mind, one way I'm going to insure my success at keeping my New Year's resolutions this year is by working on developing only one new habit at a time each month. Then, every time I turn a calendar page, I'll work on developing a different new habit.

At the end of the year, I could easily have twelve new positive habits in my life. Once something's become a habit, it's simply a part of my life and not something I'll even have to think about anymore.

Here are some sample goals and habits I'm planning to implement throughout the coming year (in no particular order -- taken one at time, one per month):

  • Use both an aerobic video and my exercise equipment 3-4 times per week
  • Spend 20-30 minutes reading aloud to my children everyday
  • Get up at 5am for personal prayer and Bible study
  • Work on my new book for half an hour everyday
  • Spend ten minutes each day decluttering

If I had started the New Year off by attempting to do every one of these things at the same time, I know I would've become overwhelmed, and then given up long before any of these activities became habitual and second nature.

What's the area of life you're most concerned about? Exercise? Weight loss? Healthy eating? Getting organized? Saving money? Spending more time with your kids? Break your goal down into simple steps that you can easily manage, and then start working your way to your goal, one small step at a time.

As the old cliche' says: How do you eat an elephant? ... One bite at a time. By making small and consistent changes, it's possible to change your health, your body, and your life.

Deborah Taylor-Hough is the author of the bestselling Frozen Assets: Cook for a Day, Eat for a Month and A Simple Choice: a practical guide for saving your time, money and sanity. She also edits the Simple Times email newsletter. To subscribe, visit Debi online at:

Copyright Deborah Taylor-Hough Used with permission. All rights reserved.

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