Li's Blog: 21 days for new habits? Hmmmm....

21 days for new habits? Hmmmm....

A rule of thumb, when making a change: do the new behaviour for 21 days.   Apparently, it takes that timeline to create a new habit.   Hmmm....

In my area, the "stay home/social distance" government edicts occurred on March 12th.   First response: fear.   That usually brings out the Crab in  us...we scuttle under our rock and sit tight.  

The first weeks were tough.   Now, people are wearing masks, following the marks on the floor at supermarkets, guiding people to one way aisles, making sure social distancing is followed while waiting outside and while indoors shopping.    It all takes a little longer, and since none of us can go anywhere yet, that is just fine.  

Are we day dreaming more?   Isn't that where our best creative ideas come from?  

So yes, the first efforts at a zoom meeting were a little hesitant.   Now, like most new things that we swallow, it's just the way it is.  

Some of us have to invest in new equipment.   I went from an iphone 6 to an 11 Pro, yesterday, and that's a learning curve.   The Crab moment is over.   Now, it's about discovery.   By next week, I will be wondering what took me so long!

This coming weekend is a holiday weekend right across's called Victoria Day on Monday.   It's seen as the traditional begining of the summer season in Canada, where people go to cottages and open up their retreats.   Not this year.  

So, back to the line-ups we now linger in, waiting our turn.  Let's imagine we've all been transported to being a buyer.   What does that feel like?   What is a buyer looking for right now, with all these worrying changes?    Aha...feel those creative juices as you think about answering that!

The message is: go for it.  No matter what occurs, where we find ourselves, we have the resilience to figure this online world out.   That's the new surround sound.   Need another 21 days?   That's rush righ now.   And that's an interesting concept, right there.   Time.




How may I help you to discover special Salt Spring Island & the Southern Gulf Islands?   Call me!

Comment balloon 27 commentsLi Read • May 12 2020 05:50PM



A wonderful post worthy of pondering a la Michael Jacobs .  This situation that we find ourselves in is not a forever one...I just received a note from Paris, and the stores are open again as of yesterday morning...A

Posted by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy (Napa Consultants) 4 months ago

Hello Li - it's often about realizing that there are baby steps.  They(It) may not be easy especially in those beginning days but necessary.   

Posted by Michael Jacobs, Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393 4 months ago

Hello Li, Interesting blog and lots to take in.  It has been interesting the last month what we had to go through in our state.


Posted by Will Hamm, "Where There's a Will, There's a Way!" (Hamm Homes) 4 months ago

Great to hear fron you all...appreciated your comments.   Am experimenting with my new iphone.   "Interesting"!

Posted by Li Read, Caring expertise...knowledge for you! (Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring)) 4 months ago

Life is a journey...not a destination...there will always be something to figure out, understand, learn...I for one am enjoying the ride - not the COVID chaos itself - but I'll be honest - as a virtual assistant, this pandemic has forced the world (and a couple of my sweet clients ♥) to learn a few of the joys of technology that I have been trying to nudge them towards.  I love the old ways and simple times - but I also love technology - I'm an odd duck !  ;-)

Posted by Christine Wade - Real Estate Virtual Assistant, Proud to Serve Your Real Estate Support Needs (Christine Wade) 4 months ago

Hi Li- love your post. This is just a jog in the path we're on. It's not forever but we have to understand that the path we'll be on might have changed. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) 4 months ago

Hi Li,  Thanks for the great post.  By the time this becomes habit - and we are all used to it - something else will come along.  Life is a series of changes - both for the good and the bad.

Posted by Bob Crane, Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671 (Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams Fox Cities) 4 months ago

Thank you to everyone for your thoughtful comments...appreciated!!!

Posted by Li Read, Caring expertise...knowledge for you! (Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring)) 4 months ago

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) 4 months ago

Good morning, Li Read your post made me smile from start to finish!!!  I take baby steps, and it's one baby step at a time...LOL.... it is what it is.... 

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty - Retired ) 4 months ago

It does take a little while, but then new activities become the norm. Until other things change and then there's another new norm!

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (406-270-3667,, Broker, Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp Realty) 4 months ago

Good morning Li Read ,

So glad that Kathy Streib featured your post in her "Ah-ha" moments for the week. We all will be taking baby steps trying to find the new normal. It will be different than before.

Posted by Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899) 4 months ago

Good morning Li Read - true enough.  Some new a better habits are being created just because changes had to be made.

Posted by Grant Schneider, Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes (Performance Development Strategies) 4 months ago

We live in fast-moving and changing times Li Read Making those adjustments are necessary to keep up.

Posted by Doug Dawes, Your Personal Realtor® (Keller Williams Realty - Topsfield, MA) 4 months ago

As so many said at the beginning of this, what are you going to do with the time, what new skill or language will you learn. Lots we can do if we decide to.

Posted by Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line (Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400) 4 months ago

I personally do not mind this laid back life style. Filled up a tank of gas for 2 months. Home repairs are kept up. Yard is meticulously maintained. Even got a garden growing vegetables. Yesterday, I went to a local park reviewing documents with a client sat outside sunning ourselves.

Posted by Sam Shueh, mba, cdpe, reopro, pe ( (408) 425-1601) 4 months ago

I enjoyed your post! Your post reminds me of how much we've made the best of a bad situation. Not to be insensitive, but we're making good memories and not participating in the fear, conspiracy theories, news viewing or social arguing. We do us and do not look to others to validate how we do our pandemic experience. Some great new habits have evolved, like evening happy hour on our patio for downtime and couple time and daily hikes for fresh air and exercise (distancing and maskless) with our dog. 

Posted by Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets, & Host of Postcards From Success Podcast (Big Block Realty 858.232.8722) 4 months ago

Hi Li:

I enjoyed your perspective!

I suspect we are all creating new routines, and perhaps some habits (hopefully all good ones) as a result of all that's going on, and all the restrictions.


Posted by Jeff Dowler, CRS, The Southern California Relocation Dude (eXp Realty of California, Inc.) 4 months ago

Great post!  I can see why Kathy chose to highlight it this week!

Posted by Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®, Giving Back With Each Home Sold! (RE/MAX Realty Center ) 4 months ago

Great post!  I can see why Kathy chose to highlight it this week!

Posted by Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®, Giving Back With Each Home Sold! (RE/MAX Realty Center ) 4 months ago

I am just as busy now as I was right before the restaurants closed down on March 19th.  I started calling clients, friends, and family and asking how they were doing.  Many people are looking to get out of their states and finally make the move to Sedona.  I am looking at this time as a reset or reboot. 

Posted by Sheri Sperry - MCNE®, (928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR® (Coldwell Banker Realty) 4 months ago

Hi Li, Yes, the 21 days is a tested time for forming  a habit. My yoga school had a promotion which involved 21 days of yoga for $21, or something similar (the 21 days timeframe was present). It worked very well for me. And I remembered it for other actvities off the matt. I am glad Kathy Streib featured your blog - I had missed it.

Posted by Steffy Hristova, Tempe AZ Realtor - Your Home Close to Your Work! (HomeSmart Elite Group Tempe AZ Tel: 480-966-9353) 4 months ago

Interesting post.  Yes our brains need a bit of reminding in the beginning.  And Old habits are hard to break, but your 21 day rule should work.   Good thoughts. 

Posted by Jan Green, HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN (Value Added Service, 602-620-2699) 4 months ago

Li, it was pretty scary in the begining, and somewhat still is, as many do not want to accept what they SHOULD do, social distancing & wearing a mask in public.

Posted by Joan Cox, Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time (House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373) 4 months ago

That is the advice I'm giving my 22 year old daughter--she is planning to go back to her job at an expensive Italian restaurant--but who knows how long that will last!  She needs to focus on Plan B!


Posted by Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR, Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area (Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes) 4 months ago

Great perspective.  Our world has adapted a slower pace while expanding the overall use of technology (who knew last year we would all be Zoom experts!).

Posted by Shirley Coomer, Realtor, Keller Williams Realty, Phoenix Az (Keller Williams Realty Sonoran Living) 4 months ago

Li Read 

From the shock to the crab to under the rock and coming out... this was an excellent analogy and fine words of wisdom! This is something we can all relate to - I know I can! You conjure up so much imagery and you get my juices going. I'm thinking you're very wise and wonderful. Because of you, I am energized!

Thank you.

Posted by Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP, Selling Homes Changing Lives (DFW FINE PROPERTIES) 4 months ago