Outdoor Diary: Why Now Is the Perfect Time for a New Outdoor Habit

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Episode 228 Humans Outside

Ever stopped to consider when the right time to start a new habit might be? In her book Happier at Home, Gretchen Rubin has a suggestion on when that is — and Amy tends to agree. In this episode Amy talks about why now is a great time to try a new habit like going outside every day. Listen now.

Some of the good stuff:

[:46] I’m a junky for this

[1:08] Why I decided to try this for a year

[1:24] How that got me to The Happiness Project, which is about this

[1:38] Gretchen Rubin’s second book gives this idea

[2:20] What she suggests instead of that other thing

[2:49] Which brought me to this

[3:08] And that has inspired me to suggest this

[3;22] Let’s have a party together!

[3:30] I made this help

[4:15] No regrets — none

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Listen to this episode on iTunes, Google Podcasts, or wherever you find your favorite podcasts.

The following is an edited transcript of this episode of Humans Outside.

It’s absolutely no secret: I am a scheduling, time management, productivity, improve-your-life-this-way, try-this-new-challenge junky. Maybe we can blame my mom for that, but you’re going to have to listen to Humans Outside Season 6 premier episode, coming Sept. 8, to hear why.

Anyway. I like a good schedule and challenge. It’s why I decided to make heading outside daily a challenge for a year just to see if I could do it despite all the reasons I could come up with to simply, well, not to.

And it’s why way before that day I picked up and read Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project.

Now, if you’ve never read this book, Ill give you a quick recap. Gretchen decides to test drive ways that studies say make a person happier and see if they actually do. In her second book, Happier at Home, she focused on similar questions focused on her home life. And in it she offers this idea: September is the new January.

Think about it. We always start new habits in January around New Years. Fresh year, fresh start, right? But January is hardly the ideal time from any other view to kick off new habits. It’s the middle of winter, and what’s going on outside is probably not overly inspiring. You just finished the holidays, so you’re probably exhausted. And there’s all this pressure in the world to pick a new habit and do it.

Sure, January is fine from a new month perspective. And if you want to start a new habit go for it any time you feel like it.

But if you’re contemplating the ideal time for a new habit, she suggested, September is a much better choice. We’re thinking of fresh starts in September as one season turns to another. Whatever is happening in the world is probably more inspiring weather-wise. And if you have kids or know someone with kids, you’ve probably noticed a back-to-school, fresh start vibe there.

Like she said, September is the new January. But better.

It was that inspiration that got me to kick off my own outdoor habit September 1, 2017. It seemed like a marvelous fresh start time of year to start going outside every day for at least those 20 consecutive minutes.

And here we are, almost five full years later. I’m still going strong. And now I’m helping you get outside daily, too.

So I have this suggestion for you: if you’re thinking about or even toying with the idea of starting a new outdoor habit, stop waiting. You could start today. You could start tomorrow. Or you could consider starting Sept. 1 just like I did, and then next year when you hit your one-year mark, we can celebrate our milestones together. Wouldn’t that be fun?

If you’re having trouble feeling inspired, I have created an outdoor habit challenge kit for you through the Humans Outside 365 Challenge. I’ve got three tiers here, on sale now, to help you get going. They all come with a digital Challenge Guide and monthly inspiration by me through your inbox. You also get this fantastic outdoor challenge finisher decal i created just for this.

If you like a little more, you can register for the Mountain or Sky tiers, which come with even more Humans Outside swag just for you, such as a finisher medal, Humans Outside decals that are great for your water bottles or car and a Humans Outside buff aka neck gaiter, perfect for those cooler temperatures that we all know are coming.

You can find it all at HumansOutside.com/Challenge today. Help me celebrate my five years of going outside by registering for your own challenge. I’ve never once regretted my own outdoor time — not one single solitary moment — and I know you won’t regret making this a part of your life, either.

You can see all of my photos from my outdoor time on Humans Outside on Facebook and Instagram. Share your outdoor time, too, with #humansoutside365. Until next time, we’ll see you out there.

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