Micro Habits

We’re now 28 days into our 1,000 hours outside challenge. And while we’re far from quitting or giving up on this lofty goal, we also have to make peace with a slower start than one might expect. An equal distribution of 1,000 hours over twelve months would be about 83 hours per month. We’re clocking in at more like 25ish. That’s…not great.

But it’s also completely okay. Because in all honesty, 25ish hours outside during a Midwest winter is probably about 23 hours more than I’d usually be putting in.

These extra hours outside have brought a wealth of benefits. We’ve gone sledding, walked several trails, explored nature, and just had a lot of fun. More importantly- slowly, but surely, we’ve picked up some small positive habits along the way.

It’s been weird noticing this, but I’ve caught myself wishing I could get outside while at my day job. There’s even been a few occasions during my prep period that I’ve bundled up and walked the perimeter of the school before going back in to do my actual prepping. On one of these walks, I came up with a new story idea! Now whether or not I have time to work on yet another WIP is a whole other thing…

I’ll admit, I’m someone who grabs a new interest and squeezes all the life out of it until it’s no longer new and shiny to me. That’s, of course, a possible outcome for this outdoor challenge. But I’m confident that the micro habits I’ve been establishing the past four weeks will stick. Like when it’s almost dusk and dinner is prepped and the boys are playing with the neighbors, you might find me reading a book on the back deck. Or, if we’re planning to get together as friends, don’t be surprised if I suggest a hike instead of a coffee shop (though I do love me a coffee date…maybe we can combine the two!).

My point is, not all resolutions or grand plans need to be all-in all the time. Maybe the point is to build a sturdy foundation that enriches our lives and brings us closer who we want to become. The key to building that foundation? One small step in the right direction.