How to Revive Your Finances, Fitness, and Faith in 21 Days

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What does it take to get out of a rut?  How do you develop a pattern when it seems like you’ve tried to change but often ended up with dismal results?

Over the last few months our family hasn’t had much of a routine.  We’ve been here, there, and everywhere.  The unfortunate result is that we’ve let some of our daily routines slip.

However, for the next three weeks, life will be as normal, scheduled, and stable as it has been in months.  As a result, I decided that I should just go ahead and take advantage of a 21 day window of opportunity.  I’m not going to worry if I start a habit I can’t keep beyond 21 days.  I’m not going to be concerned if something won’t be sustainable after 21 days.  I’m only going to think about the next 21 days.

Then it dawned on me.  The 21 day opportunity won’t just help me, but it will help you as well.

The 21 Day Challenge

If you’re up for it, I’d like you to consider challenging yourself to change some aspect of your finances, fitness, or faith in the next 21 days.

  1. Pick one, two, or three things in your life that you’d like to change or improve, but that you’ve kept putting off.
  2. Commit today to work on that for the next 21 days.

This is not a New Years resolution where you’re trying to change a habit for a year. All we’re looking for is just a short burst of discipline.

Here are the Items on my list:

  1. Exercise: Lately I haven’t been taking advantage of the opportunity to exercise.  It’s not that I haven’t had the time, but priorities, schedules, and other things got in my way.  My goal is to exercise 6 days a week for the next 21 days.  That’s only committing to 18 workouts, so it seems very achievable.
  2. Budget: I mentioned that we’d been struggling to get back into budgeting.  Well, for the next 21 days, every day I’ll take less than five minutes to track our expenses.  Recently, we’ve started using Mvelopes, so in a future post I’ll let you know how that goes.
  3. TV: I’ve got some work I really need to catch up on, and so TV is going to take a backseat.  It’s not a full 21 days away from TV since where we are staying has TV on in the lobby during breakfast, and the TV is on in the exercise room, but I’m not going to turn on the TV for myself to watch anytime in the next 21 days.

So what are some items you could consider committing to change over the next 21 days?

The Advantages of the 21 Day Challenge

  1. I’ve read that it takes 21 days to form a habit, so some of these changes might actually stick.
  2. You can do almost anything for 21 days.
  3. It will make a difference in your life.

Suggested challenges to consider:

  • Giving a certain amount every week for the next 21 days.  For those of you who find it hard to give, this would be a good experiment.
  • No buying clothes for 21 days.
  • No eating out for 21 days.
  • No using the credit card for 21 days.
  • Agreeing to say ‘yes’ to every ministry opportunity for 21 days.
  • Spend an extra hour a day with your kids for 21 days.
  • Save $10 a day for 21 days.
  • Do a daily Bible reading for 21 days.
  • Have a time of prayer for 21 days.

Is anyone else going to join me in trying to change a habit over the next 21 days?

Comments

  1. Marianne Hammonds says

    Wow, I came up with quite a list of things I could do for 21 days. So I am only pick two so I dont get overwhelmed. The big one for me is to stop smoking. This will help my health and my finances. The second is to work consistantly on housework. My house suffers because of having RA and working. I will work on cleaning in the morning before going to work and on my days off.

    • says

      Marianne,
      I also came up with a long list, but knew I’d need to weed it down. What an amazing decision to stop smoking for the next 21 days. Good for you. I’ll pray that it goes well. Glad you’ll be able to keep up with the housework too.

  2. MJHinds says

    Sounds good. For 21 days I will weed for 5-10 min 6 days a week. I will also have my children read to me from their Bibles! This should be fun! Thanks for the challenge.

  3. says

    Craig,
    Great article and great challenge.. My next video in our Becoming Debt Free, God’s Way is on Breaking habits and addictions to save money and save relationships. Establishing good habits needs to be added to the video. I agree it takes 21 days to establish a habit. I walk and swim 5 days a week now because it is a good, positive habit I have developed over time. I will be following you on twitter. Keep up the good work.
    Jeff @ debt free squad

  4. Jasmine says

    I love it! And I think it’s a great idea and very encouraging. I needed to see this and I’m going to pray that God helps me stay focused for the next 21 days and complete this challenge. Thanks!

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