A Habit A Month: Take Vitamins

If you’ve been reading this blog longer than 6 months, you may be familiar with my A Habit A Month feature.  My last post was way back in November where I mentioned that I would be working on taking my vitamins regularly.  Well, it really took me 6 months to get into the habit of taking my vitamins regularly (hence the delayed update).

I was constantly forgetting to take my vitamins – that had me constantly feeling weak and lethargic.  I was determined to work out a plan to remind myself to take my vitamins regularly.  I was diligent in finding blogs and articles on how to make habits stick.  I tried a few tactics, hoping each month that I would get into the habit of taking my vitamins.  Here are three methods I tried that didn’t work.

1. Associating taking my vitamins with another activity

I read somewhere that you are more likely to succeed with a habit, when you associate it with a habit that you have already established.  I tried to associate taking my vitamins with my morning coffee and breakfast, but the habit didn’t stick. Mostly because I love the flavor of coffee and the vitamins were spoiling it :).

2. Taking my vitamins when I gave the kids theirs

In the winter months, the kids were taking vitamin supplements, so I tried to remind myself to take my medicines when I gave them theirs.  That didn’t work either.  Sometimes, I completely forgot to give them their vitamins and when I did, I forgot to take mine.

3. Including it in my to-do list

This was one that worked for a brief period of time.  I included “Take Vitamins” on my daily to-do list and it worked on days I did make a list.  On the days I didn’t, I didn’t take my vitamins either.

So moving on to what actually worked…  Surprisingly, when I discovered this method, it took me less than a month to establish the habit of taking my vitamins regularly.

Step 1: Confirm & stock up on vitamins

I called my uncle (a doctor) and verified my medication.  He changed it a bit and gave me the recommended dosage.  My husband then bought enough vitamins to last me a month.

Step 2: Plan my medication every week

My mother got me a pill dispenser similar to this and once a week, I fill it up with the vitamins I have to take each day that week.  I then place it in a prominent spot in the kitchen that I am sure to look at everyday.

Step 3: Determine not to miss a day

At the beginning I continued to miss a day or two, but the labels on the pill dispenser helped me keep track of the days I’d missed.  It was easier then to be more determined about not missing a day.

I seriously can’t believe it took me this long to make this a habit.  Well, better late than never, right?! 🙂  Now I can move on and work on some other habit that I need to establish!

Habit for June: Determine a ‘work at home’ plan.  Ever since I started working part time from home, I’ve been struggling to hold it all together – kids, home, work, blog…  With the kids starting school again next week, I definitely have to get my act together.  I will be spending June working on streamlining my days and allocating chunks of time for work without compromising on my primary ministry as a wife, mother & homemaker.  If all goes well, I’ll be blogging about it towards the end of the month.

A Habit A Month” challenge is about working on just one habit a month – one small step at a time.  Focus on just one area in your life that needs an overhaul and make it the habit you want to develop in the coming month.  It could be as simple as waking up early or spending time with God everyday.  This is an opportunity for you to actually take a step forward and work on that one good habit you’ve always wanted to develop.  Or kick that one bad habit that has always been nagging your conscience.  Are you up for it?  Who’s with me?

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