Breaking Old Habits & Making New Ones

Breaking Old Habits and Making New Ones

The days I watch my nephew I have created a bad habit during his nap where all I want to do is eat.  He naps around noon so I am usually tired from the morning and the thought of having some time to myself causes me to freely indulge.

If I wasn't eating I was zoning out reading blogs and browsing Pinterest.  Though I allow myself this luxury from time to time, I always left feeling like I used up my precious non-baby productivity time.  And then I read the following about how habits are formed and realized it was time for a change:

I decided that in order to break this unconscious habit I needed to change it.  Instead of continuing to eat past lunch or zone out online, I found I needed to find something that was both relaxing but also productive.  I was reminded that I needed to work on some digital photobooks so I grabbed my laptop, popped in New In Town, and got to work.

I also realized that I did not need to force myself to do something hard in order to break this habit.  I didn't have to use this time to get everything done yet I felt that way if I wasted nap time.  I wanted to use the time to feel semi-productive but also allow myself the time to rest while my nephew slept without overeating or completely zoning out.  I needed some sort of balanced plan.

I usually start my mornings around 6 or 7 am and I get my work out done in the morning as well as tidy up the house and get any household chores done so that I can have nap time to myself.  Finding something productive but enjoyable was just the cure I needed to breaking my nap time habit.

To read more about habits, check out this article on Goop, How to Break a Habit...Or Start a New One or this post by Donald Miller, How Having a Little Grace Toward Yourself Contributes to Success.

// Do you have a habit that needs to be replaced with a new one?  How have you handled breaking old habits in the past?


  1. Great Post Ashley! I have been thinking about this same thing recently. I've been apt to use the kids' nap times to just relax and spend time on the internet, but like you I felt like I wasted the time when they woke up. I like the idea of doing something relaxing, but also productive. I enjoyed reading Donald Miller's post on giving ourselves grace too. Thanks for sharing that! Now I'm off to doing some relaxing and productive things. :)

  2. Thank you for the post! I too enjoyed that Donald Miller piece. It’s refreshing reminder after coming out of that oh-so-convicting study of James, which left me with many habits to break and even more to make. :)
    P.S. I watched New In Town at my bachelorette party, and haven’t seen or thought about it since! Weird? Yes. It was my mom’s idea.

  3. Boy, this post hit me between the eyes. I really need to start some new habits. I've been pretty lazy since my husband got deployed and I'm not making good use of my free time. I have lots of projects to finish and get going on, school work to do and exercise time too. I really need to create some new habits and I think your post has generated some much needed butt kicking!!!!
    Thanks, !!

  4. Nice post! It's funny how bad habits can kind of sneak up on us when we fall into the pattern of doing the same bad behavior over and over. Good for you for finding a distraction.


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