21 Days Of Discipline Experiment

You may have heard the popular belief that it takes 21 days to form a habit. This notion, often propagated by self-help authors, might seem to be grounded in rigorous scientific research. However, the reality is somewhat different.

This concept originated from Maxwell Maltz, a renowned American cosmetic surgeon and author. Maltz is most recognized for his pioneering self-help book, “Psycho-Cybernetics,” first published in 1960.

In this influential work, Maltz posits that individuals can enhance their lives and realize their goals by altering their self-image and thought patterns. He introduced the concept of “self-image psychology,” underscoring the significance of positive self-perception in attaining personal and professional success.

Maltz noted that his patients typically took about 21 days to adjust to their new physical appearance after surgery. He observed a period of psychological adaptation during this time.

Over the years, this observation has been somewhat distorted and generalized into the notion that it takes 21 days to form a new habit. However, this specific timeframe is not based on rigorous scientific research but rather on Maltz’s observations of his plastic surgery patients.

In reality, the time required to establish a habit varies greatly among individuals and depends on factors such as the complexity of the behavior, motivation, and individual differences.

Maltz’s work has had a profound impact on the self-help and personal development genre, inspiring many subsequent authors and motivational speakers. His ideas have been widely accepted and integrated into various self-help and coaching programs.

Well, just like other for some reason I read from some and decided to giving a go, beliving i will.

Here is the list of things i wanted to accomplish in 21 days.

  1. When you work use Pomodoro, 30 or 40 minutes to get into the flow state .
  2. No sweets.
  3. No watching or reading news.
  4. No mindless scrolling on YouTube.
  5. Read one book.
  6. Turn off laptop and phone 6 hours before bedtime.
  7. Complete the project 1.
  8. Complete the project 2.
  9. Finish Brain Hijackers project.
  10. Write down in notebook what you truly, genuinely want and plan how to get it.
  11. Record daily if you succeeded and what you did for 21 days.
  12. Do Intermittent fasting.
  13. Stretch 5 minutes every day.
  14. Install WhatsApp on the other phone.
  15. Organize computer files better.
  16. Organize phone.
  17. Organize notes.
  18. No mindless chatting – turn off the phone when working.
  19. No mindless surfing or watching the news while working.
  20. Read book “Letting Go”, and practice every day.
  21. Complete Quick Goals.
  22. When something triggers you, let go immediately – don’t linger.
  23. No regrets for 21 days.
  24. No complaining for 21 days – accept all.
  25. Watch the entire course you started.
  26. Start various ideas you are working on
  27. Backup computer on an external hard drive.
  28. Organize notes on the computer.
  29. Get extension cords.
  30. Transfer notes from the phone.

Not long list at all. How did it go? I briefly documented my experience in this article : motivation wave rider vs strategic habit builder. I’ll recap what I wrote there.

I hung in for a solid 11 days, grinding away before finally throwing in the towel. It was too big a chew to bite. I was overwhelmed. Cramming 5 things to do daily is a significant challenge, let alone 20 or 30. It was a grind, a real gut-check, and at first, I was scratching my head, wondering why I couldn’t keep the rhythm. Too much, too big, too soon.

Many people, just like me, fall into this trap, thinking they will ace the list. This is not how you get things done. Cramming 10 tasks into a single day? Forget it. You need to start small with only a few things, like 2-3, until you get them done or until they become a habit if those tasks require perpetual repetition.

Read my article: “How to be Consistent in 9 Simple Steps: The Ultimate Guide” to learn how to do it the proper way that will actually allow you to finish things.