Take the Opportunity: Start a Good Habit

Photo of Randy Legaspi

By Stuart Young


Take the opportunity today to
start a ‘good’ habit.

Starting a habit only takes 21 days! That’s right, 3 weeks and you are
well on your way to creating a good habit in your life whether that’s
going to the gym every day, eating your 5 a day every day or resisting
smoking each and every day.

The next stage is 4 months. If you can push yourself through the first
21 days of creating a habit it exponentially becomes easier and easier
each and every day after. When you hit the 16 week mark (4 months) you
will have a deeply embedded habit that is harder to stop than it is to

What are you waiting for? Decide today which habit you would like to
kick or which you would like to start. Choose one only, in order to
give yourself a chance to succeed – you can always choose more habits
in the future once you have tasted the success of this first one.

Good luck!


Editor’s Note: Stuart Young writes his thoughts on How To Change Your Life One Day At A Time. He aims to provide a “set of 365 practical little guides which WILL change your life if you commit to implementing as many as possible.” He is also completing his book about changing your life one day at a time. You can check his thoughts here.


  1. wartica says:

    I totally agree; all it takes is that initial step, and then you’re well on your way:)

    • stuartart says:

      That’s the thing – the first step is always the hardest and takes the most energy (bit like a car starting). After that momentum is continually being created. :)

  2. Reblogged this on Stuart Otway-Smith and commented:
    I have been trying o quit smoking and having some success, I broke the habits first like after food and such and when I get cravings I find something else to do, I am still smoking for pain relief bah!
    Going to reblog this as it is really inspirational, thanks.

    • stuartart says:

      Thanks Stuart – here’s the thing, our brains are wired in such a way that in order to quit one habit we need to have a substitute. If we don’t create a good one in a bad ones place – the brain will create one for us. You know the type of thing: you give up smoking, and take up eating! So, if you’re gonna quit something – start something! Good luck.

  3. Thank you for the reminder. I know this is true, as I’ve experienced it with some habits I wanted to start in the past. Now I think I need to apply it to my writing! I really want to grow as a writer, and ‘they’ say one needs to write daily. Perhaps it will become a habit and eventually become easier and easier to do.

    • stuartart says:

      Donna this is so true. In order to write my latest book (out soon…) I created the habit of writing one page per day – for an entire year! Some days I failed. But 99% I succeeded, and it got easier and easier as the days and weeks went by. Here’s a tip – if you find you are struggling to write – write something, anything. You can always rewrite it tomorrow. I found that some of my best writing happened when I least expected it to by following this process. Good luck. Stu :)

      • Thank you for the encouragement. I know. I know. It’s so hard to get started. But once I do, I love the process. It is great to hear your idea of just going ahead and writing something, anything, knowing I can always rewrite it the next day. I really do want to get this habit going.

  4. By the way, where was that amazing picture taken? It’s just lovely.

  5. I am being mindful to workout this pain racked body, we have joined a gym and for now I am going every other day with a hope to increase to daily :) I KNOW in time it will become easier and easier, which in the midst of the moment can be easy to forget.
    Thank you for the reminder!!! Blessings to you~

    • stuartart says:

      Remember to rest your muscle groups for one day before training them again. otherwise you can become fatigued or injured and then you HAVE to stop, then you lose momentum. Best to start slowly and progress slowly. Remember the hare and the tortoise! :)

  6. Your timing is impeccable! I started a new business approach at 10h00 this morning South African time with some of my leaders and have had incredible results, thanks to changing bad business habits I have learned over the last 20 odd years. Staying power is definitely required when starting something new or quitting something old. When I stopped smoking about 4 years ago I made a mental decision to do so and once I made the choice for the right reasons, it was the easiest thing I had ever done. I was so surprised at the results that I wondered why I hadn’t done it sooner! An old adage comes to mind: “Where there is a will there is a way!”

    • stuartart says:

      Hi Julian, you must have incredible will power. Not everyone is so lucky. For a good tip on how to kick one bad habit see my response to Stuart above. I’m intrigued as to what happened at your meeting this morning – wanna share? :)

  7. flamidwyfe says:

    I think the photo is the Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi… I used to live there and had the pleasure to visit it… so gorgeous! Reward yourself from getting rid of your bad habit and travel with the money you save :) I quit smoking 7 years ago and can’t imagine how much money I haven’t spent on that!

  8. On the 1st of January I started using a prompt a day to make me write a short story (or part of one) everyday. I’m still doing it, and like you say, now, it’s getting to the point where I jump out of bed in the mornings, read the prompt, and start coming up with ideas before I’ve even got my pen out.

    It was a chore for that first month, but I’m glad I persevered :)

    Great post!


  9. stuartart says:

    I love hearing stories like yours Vikki. Good for you, and good luck with sharing those short stories with the wider world. :)

  10. living4bliss says:

    Love it. We are always talking about breaking bad habits, but don’t spend enought time talking about replacing them with good habits.

    If you have enough good habits, you won’t have time for the bad ones!!!

  11. haroldmillet says:

    I totally agree.. The very first step is the hardest part of the process but as the author said it will “exponentially becomes easier and easier each and every day after”.

    This is perfect to start the week… Thanks Stuart!

  12. handstitch says:

    I spent 4..5 hours last night de-cluttering one room…took away one garbage-full…but the room was ever more messy than I started out! Now I can’t stop squeezing up storm and probably won’t be able to get back to tackle it this week until the nerve calms down. I will have to get right back next week and try again.


  1. [...] giving something else up for next month. Giving up another bad habit or maybe even starting a new, good habit. Ideas, ideas. [...]

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