Building Community and Life-Changing Habits

I first learned about the book Girl, Wash Your Face from a friend of mine who sells skincare products. Naturally, I assumed the book had to do with her business and was intrigued, considering I have struggled with acne for many years. Much to my surprise, the book has nothing to do with the act of actually washing your face. Rather, the book is about washing yourself of common lies we so often tell ourselves. Each chapter dives into a different lie and goes on to explain how we can stop believing them.

At the time of buying this book, I was feeling a little lost and was lacking motivation. As I turned each page, I found myself taking an honest, vulnerable look inside, and realized this book was the push I needed to being the best version of myself. A month after I finished reading, the book’s author, Rachel Hollis, announced a community-wide challenge her company was hosting called “Last 90 Days.” The idea is to live the last 90 days of the year with as much intention as you would start the first 30.

This all happened at the same time that I experienced a big life change, so it seemed like the perfect opportunity to completely throw myself into this challenge. The challenge begins by encouraging you to set your “Five to Thrive.” These are components the author believes to be fundamental elements to making lasting positive change. While you can pick any five things to practice each day, she suggests the following:

  • Drink Water: It’s recommended that you drink half your weight in ounces each day.
  • Give Up a Category: Give up one food category you know you shouldn’t be eating for 30 consecutive days.
  • Start Each Day with Gratitude: Take a moment each morning to write down five things you’re grateful for.
  • Move Your Body: Make time for 30 minutes of a physical activity of your choosing each day.
  • Wake Up: Get up an hour earlier than normal and use that time for yourself.

After you have your “Five to Thrive” dialed in, Hollis and her team send out each week’s theme via email. The idea is to dive into the theme and find ways to practice it throughout the week. Over time, each of these themes build on each other and you’ll find yourself incorporating these practices into your daily routine. During the “Last 90 Days” challenge, I found the motivation I was previously struggling with and began to feel like a new person. The combination of reading “Girl, Wash Your Face” and doing the end-of-year challenge have helped me in more ways than I could have imagined.

One habit I picked up during my first round of “Last 90 Days” was to not only write down five things I’m grateful for each morning, but to also write down 10 things I’m grateful for that happened that day. Your journal can be a book that you have laying around at home or scratch paper you find in your office. Whatever you can find to write on will work! It’s amazing how our perspective on life can change when we take a moment to think about all the wonderful things happening around us.

Amid the chaos of the COVID-19 worldwide pandemic, it has been easy to slide into old, bad habits and lose sight of how wonderful life really is. To help build a sense of community during this time, Hollis has introduced a new challenge called “Next 90 Days.” This challenge follows the guidelines of “Last 90 Days” and is a chance for us to live intentionally for the next three months, regardless of what is happening in the world around us.

You may be feeling defeated, sad, angry, and a slue of other emotions as we are forced to stay in our homes and continue practicing social distancing guidelines. Absolutely allow yourself to feel. However, I encourage you to not let these feelings take over. Instead, find ways to enforce positive habits into your daily routine. You’ll be surprised how your life changes when your perception and habits change. The “Next 90 Days” challenge has just begun and it’s not too late to sign up. All resources associated with the challenge are free and can be accessed here. I encourage you to sign up and find community, especially now when we could all use a little motivation and positivity!  

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