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My weekly ritual that changes everything

Nearly every Sunday evening for the past 7 years, I decide what 3 habits I’ll focus on in the coming week.  Then, I make sure I do those 3 things every day.  It usually takes several weeks to really make a habit stick for the long run, but this initial commitment serves 3 purposes:

1. It gives me something to devote my enthusiastic attention to, and has me feeling proud of my progress, even through life’s ups & downs.
2. Committing to just 1 week is a way to get started without feeling overwhelmed by the weight of “I should do this forever.
3. By focusing on just 3 things for just 1 week, I can make adjustments to my habits from week-to-week, until I really find my groove.

Before this practice, I would write mammoth lists of all the habits I wanted to embrace, and tackle them all at once.  By Monday evening I’d be zoning out on the couch with a bag of potato chips, feeling like a miserable failure of a human being.  No worky.

The simple ritual of choosing 3 weekly habits has changed my life.

This week’s 3 daily habits:
Early morning walks; practicing my ukulele; all solo meals at the dining table.[/caption]

This week, what 3 habits will you embrace?

Here are some guidelines that may help:
* Make them daily habits.  This will help them stick.
* Each morning, set up a reminder system for each habit (an alarm on your phone, for example.)
* Tell your friends for accountability!  Have them play with you.
* Don’t set the bar so high that you feel discouraged.  Small steps add up.

—> I know this exercise is simple, but sometimes simple things make big impact. Will you join me?  In the comments below, share what 3 habits you’ll embrace this week!  I’d love to be your cheerleader.

55 Comments

  1. Absolutely love this post and it couldn’t come at a better time! My three habits I want to embrace are waking up early, going to bed early, and having dinner planned so that I don’t end up staying up late at night trying to work and have meals unplanned.

    • Awesome, Elizabeth. How’s it going so far?

      Much love,
      Nisha

  2. I’m bringing more movement (hula hooping), book reading, and stretching into my daily routine.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Hula hooping! You have no idea how much you’ve inspired me to get a hula hoop now, Melissa 🙂

      Have fun!
      Nisha

    • I love that, Melissa! I am a fellow hula hooper myself and that I one of my three things for the week too.

  3. A green juice in the morning.
    15 meditation.
    Night time streaches.

    Thank you for this lovely simple reminder. Do you carry on the same habits from week to week sometimes?

    • Night time stretches…good one, Camila.
      I will add that one when these ones stick.

      And yes, the same habits stay until they stick!

      xo
      Nisha

    • Lots of morning pages in here. Love it!

      Thanks, Stephanie 🙂

      xo
      Nisha

  4. My 3 habits for the week each morning:
    – oil pulling with coconut oil
    – meditation (this morning I listened to Elayne Doughty – holy moly!)
    – breakfast with greens (smoothie, juice, or sauteed!)

    xo Nisha. This is fun!

    • Becca love, you’ll have to teach me oil pulling!
      And isn’t Elayne the best?!

      xox
      Nisha

    • I LOVE oil pulling, meditation and breakfast smoothies… hmmm Becca, you are are speaking my language 🙂 haha!

  5. Great idea! My three habits are: walking my dog every day at least 1x, plank, and read 10 pages of a good book a day.

    • Plank! I love to hate it. Great work, Lauren 🙂

  6. Thats awesome! Sometimes I feel like there are so many things I am trying to do/change/add it can feel overwhelming. But I like this idea of 3 things, one week….I can handle that. 3 things: eating smaller portions, moving my body everyday, no email in bed.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Yes! These are SO GOOD, Sarah.

      Cheering for you,
      Nisha

  7. Nisha, such a timely and lovely post!
    Thank you. <3
    Mine for the week:
    Morning pages
    The Desire Map
    and Business Planning (Calendar Set-Up)

    • Awesome, Katie 🙂

      So you’ll be Desire Mapping & Business Planning each day?

      Big hugs,
      Nisha

  8. Awesome, I am doing the same for a few weeks: just having one week goals, with friends accountability, so I can actually have the reward in one week, not when I am 60 years old!
    This week: 15minutes yoga and 10 minutes breathing/meditation before work every morning and singing a song I like out loud even if my voice is clumsy 🙂

    • So awesome, Natacha 🙂

      I think I’ll borrow your sining-aloud idea!

      Thanks,
      Nisha

  9. Great practice!
    My focus this week will be exercise, healthy cooking, spending time with friends.

    • Great, Nancy!

      So you’ve been cooking and exercising daily

      Big hugs,
      Nisha

  10. Love the simplicity of this!
    My three for this week: Walk or run every day at lunch, eat a salad or fruit with lunch, and get back to my nightly progress report or gratitude list.

    • Love the nightly gratitude list, Sarah 🙂
      Are you living somewhere warm that a walk
      at lunch is inviting?

      Warmly,
      Nisha

  11. This is awesome, Nisha! Will pass it on. My focus this week will be:
    Read a book a week.
    Take a daily 30-minute walk.
    Have breakfast every morning.

    • Morning breakfast is so important!
      Glad you’re including that, Hakikah.

      Big hugs,
      Nisha

  12. Yes honey – dancing (solo or in class -Michael jackson mondays dance class leaves me walking on AIR), eating food from home (not ordering out), and writing a little each day (for work or pleasure). Good reminder.
    xx

    • Nice, Ishita love. Does that mean no ordering out at all this week?

      xo
      Nisha

  13. I will, walk outside for 20 minutes everyday, practice my meditation breathing, eat raw spinach with my eggs in the morning.

    • Awesome, Rebecca. I love that these are clear and doable.

      Warmly,
      Nsha

  14. Awesome idea.
    It was my birthday this monday, and watching this just made me think about choosing 3 habits for this new year of mine: taking deep breaths & don’t let my impulses cause trouble, listen to my body, read & learn
    & 3 habits every week, this week would be: eating a salad per day, writing down whatever bothers my mind, find something positive everyday (anything that I enjoyed or was good)

    • Happy Birthday, Giselle!

      I love your 3 for the year + 3 for the week.

      Big hugs,
      Nisha

  15. Love this. I will take a 30-minute morning walk , journal and write for work daily

    • Awesome, Regina. Rooting for you!

  16. love this! (is there an echo in here? :D)
    1. clean my house for 10 minutes. (yes every day.)
    2. go for a walk (can be any/or of the following):
    – walk break at work
    -walk the dogs
    – evening walk with the hubs
    -greet the morning sunrise walk
    3. Practice asking my Oracle goddess, Ra (yes she’s a she. 🙂 little questions and practice listening to a following the answers.

    • Love every one, Erin 🙂

      Love you, too!

      xo
      Nisha

      • I amended my 10 minutes to pick up 10 things. I hated the time limit, it’s nice to just pick up whatever 10 things I feel like, as SLOW as I want. Plus, tonight I ended up picking up a good 20 things! And last night I was SO tired, so I counted a pair of a shoes as 2. Ha! I feel like the mama who says honey just pick up 10 things, and the little kid who figures out which way she feels like doing it. You’re a light and a love, Nisha! Love this so much.

        • Love it, Erin!

        • Yea Erin! Mamas could “pick up” forever as sweet kiddos “make deposits” right behind them! I use a trick called the “27 boogie.” Pick a number (use your intuition) and allow play and silliness or calmness or whatever emotion/music/flow you want to Boogie you along until you pick up that number of things. I do this with my kids. During a great boogie…we crank through the entire first floor of the house in about 8 minutes.

  17. Loved this post! I’m usually the exact same in that I make a to do list that’s five pages long and then wonder why none of it gets accomplished! So this week I am transitioning to having a weekly to do list, rather than daily. I’m also creating workflow periods of time where I block off 1-2 hours in the evening, put my phone away, turn off email, and just immerse myself in whatever task I want to get done. I’m also really working on going to bed at 10:30pm every night, even if I haven’t accomplished all that I want to, because if I don’t get enough sleep, I will not be at my best the next day.

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Yes to getting to bed early, Lindsay! Love that.

      Let me know how it all goes 🙂

  18. Definitely appreciate the blog about habits! I am making the habit of eating more greens. Just baked Kale and OMG so good!

    • Nice, Alina!

  19. This is so perfectly aligned with my desire to get myself back into a purposeful practice of life.

    My three for this week (which I started today):
    -write in my journal every morning
    -floss every day (sad to say I don’t make it a daily practice but know I need to!)
    -send love, light and prayers to a loved one each morning

    Thanks for inspiring!

    • Tricia, this practice is how I sealed the deal with flossing.
      Cheering for you!

      Big hugs,
      Nisha

  20. Hi Nisha-
    I just had to come back and re-read this post I loved it so much the first time! I used to set new goals and expect myself to do them (whatever they were) every day for the rest of eternity. Of course I crashed and burned a few days in and made myself feel like a total failure. This approach was really revolutionary! I started thinking about my weekly goals over the weekend and then on Sundays, like you suggested, choosing just 2-3 for the upcoming week. It transformed the whole idea and execution of goal-setting for me! I’m also trying different apps to help me track my progress; I’ve found some (that show the entire month) are just too overwhelming, but other apps just show you the upcoming week so it’s not as daunting. My three goals/practices for this week are 1) oil pulling (I read others doing this too, how funny!); 2) meditate at least 5 minutes; 3) say my angel prayers (I just took Doreen Virtue’s Angel Card Reading course and am trying to get better at talking to my angels! ) So thank you thank you thank you!! You truly made a difference in my life by sharing this approach. Much love, Tarah

  21. Nisha, I adore this idea! What an incredible way to overcome “The Shoulds” and just start living your dreams!

    • Thanks, Molly, and thank you for reading!

  22. Hello Nisha. I´m a reader (fan) from Norway, and I often re-read your posts, but I never comment. So the time is now!

    I´m in the middle of studying for an exam, and it is a bit hard to have daily habits. HOWEVER, I guess that it is exactly in these kind of periods that it´s even more important to have a few daily habits as it´s so easy to start de-prioritising oneself..

    I´ve always been a thinker, and seeker, and sometimes I feel so .. complicated. Thus, it is so frikkin´ refreshing to realize that actually no, I´m quite simple, and that suggestions like in this post work. My worst enemy is to feel overwhelmed, bcause then I get really paralyzed. So my new strategy is to really simplify things, and this post is a perfect example of this strategy.

    Thank you for everything you do, Nisha! I really enjoy your work, even though it´s only from my screen, as I´m never able to join any retreats, courses, etc….

    Anyhow, THANK YOU, You inspire me, and you are one of the few people I keep catching up on, even though I´ve done a cleanse of “inspirational people” to follow, get e-mails from, etc. You´re a keeper, for sure!!! (And your super-sweet friend Sarah Jenks).

    Big hug from Hedda, all the way from Norway!

  23. I love that tip. I think it seems to be so easy, but it is about creating our atitude in the long run. 3 commitements, 3 wins each day. And we love winning – it makes us so strong. I create the whole programm of waking our sexuality – based on one habits. Those small once. And the idea of sisterhood is great!

  24. What a great way to approach all of life – one week at a time… You are inspiring me to do the same in order to gain greater control over what I would like to accomplish personally. Thank you for this post today…it came at the perfect time.

  25. Love the gentle approach to developing a wealth of good habits. Thank you for sharing. My 3 concepts for the year are Ready, Fire, Love. My three habits for the week are: notice how it feels to be ready once each day, notice a moment of self-love every day, breathe hard every day, I often hedge in making a business ask or offer due to belief “I am not ready yet…” thus am curious to get in habit of noticing when I am ready – I’ll learn from this habit and work towards changing that belief. Rather than set big goals for the new year I realized it was even more important to get out of what I call “self-love debt”…gonna notice when i make deposits and move towards more and bigger deposits as I learn from observation, and I am gonna get back into my daily exercise habit after being sick for a few weeks…breathing hard is the most basic evidence I “showed up” to exercise. All kinds of fun things count for breathing hard!! 😉

  26. Sisterly inspiration at it’s best! This week my 3 are:
    1. Drink more water.
    2. Run.
    3. Nourish my inner child (she loves painting/playing with dogs/being inspired by Hayao Miyazaki films).

    I’ve been setting weekly intentions, but this is another simplified way to do it. I love it. Mahalo Nisha <3

  27. This is fun!

    This week’s daily habits are:

    1. Taking a walk outside for 400+ steps every hour (it helps the blood flow as I work from home and sit at my desk all day).

    2. Do some yoga stretching exercises for 15-20 minutes every day.

    3. Drink more water.

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