New Bossy Feature: A Week at a Time

This past week I did a detoxy cleanse kind of thing and abstained from alcohol, caffeine, and sugar. After a month of all three in excess, I felt like I needed a break, and a week (well, Monday-Saturday) was a nice manageable amount of time (if you ignore the frozen custard I ate last night—just blame it on peer pressure, won't you?). It went well. I learned things.

It gave me an idea: to create a project in which I set a new goal every week and commit to it for six days. It could be an easy way to instill new habits and break old ones, and a way for the seven weeks between now and the next time I see CM to go by more quickly. So, I'll write a post each Sunday, reflecting on the past week's project and announcing the next week's goal. You're invited to join me in any project that sounds interesting and useful to you, or if not, just to encourage and support me from the sidelines. What do you say? Are you in?

I had a revelation this week, as I walked to work past three Starbucks locations (hot chocolate!), Magnolia Bakery (cupcakes!), Alice's Tea Cup (scones!), and Levain (cookies!). My revelation was this: There is a big difference between a craving and a temptation. Despite a month of having cookies and coffee with sugar every single day (seriously), I don't think I experienced a single sugar craving last week. That was a shock, given my well-documented sweet tooth. I was, however, tempted many times, often on my walk to or from work, and sometimes even at work, where coworkers were constantly offering me chocolates, or cupcakes, or donuts. Those temptations quickly passed once I could no longer see the treat, and there was no lingering craving left behind in its place. The moral of this story is, of course, to not keep cookies in the house (and maybe find a different route to get to work). Out of sight, out of mind apparently works for me when it comes to sweets.

I guess this is obvious, but it was a huge realization for me. A craving has always seemed to me to be an innate need that cannot be denied, a monster that, left unfed, will inevitably break out of its cage and binge itself on whatever sweets are nearby. When I reframe that feeling as a temptation, however, it seems fleeting and unimportant, even easy to dismiss.

This might change my life. For a lot longer than six days.

The other big thing I learned in my detox week is that I am not addicted to either caffeine or alcohol, not even a little bit. I never got a caffeine withdrawal headache or uttered the words "I need a drink." And while I certainly saved cash and calories by not drinking, abstaining didn't make me feel significantly better or worse, just a little boring at happy hour. Cutting down on sugar consumption is a change I'd like to make on a more permanent basis, but I think my caffeine and alcohol habits are just fine.

So, for the upcoming week... I'm giving up watching TV and movies at home. I don't watch actual TV, but sites like Hulu and Fastpass make it all too easy to zone out every evening catching up on TV shows on my computer. Often I fritter away my whole night that way. This week I'm going to reclaim my evenings and see what happens.

Care to join me?


  1. What great idea! I wish you the best of luck with it! I may or may join you in it!

  2. We've been doing the same thing - but for a whole month - one was exercise every day, another was reading every night, another was getting out of our apartment and doing something around town every day - etc. This month we're working on getting up a little bit earlier and stretching for 20 minutes in the morning before doing anything else, plus going to bed at a reasonable time. We're both such night owls that this is much harder than it sounds...and we're not doing very well yet - but we'll get there ;) It may be that we will have to extend this one to next month as well for the habit to really sink in properly. It will be fun to see what you learn in the coming weeks. LOVE YOU!

  3. It never stops amazing me to realize that all of you young ones are coming up with similar goals we've had all these years! It's wonderful to see how much we are the same dedicated humans, determined to make progress in the direction of full responsibility!
    Thanks for sharing! I love it . . .

  4. I started toying with this concept in January and committed to it whole heartedly two weeks ago. What I like about it is that anyone can commit to something for one week. And if it doesn't work that's ok. You get to try something else new the next week. And if it does work then great you have changed your life that much more. It also forces you to choose smaller more realistic goals.

    Last week's "one week resolution" (my name for mine) was inspired by something I read here on your blog. I made my bed every day for the week and I loved it. That one's a keeper!


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