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Try Something New for 30 Days

Try Something New for 30 Days

Stuck in a rut? Elul – and this Ted talk – may have the answer.

by and

We may still be in the thick of summer, but this week begins the Jewish month of Elul, the last month of the year, which means Rosh Hashanah is just 30 days away. In the Jewish calendar, this 30-day time period leading up to the New Year is an intense time focused on spiritual growth, introspection and preparing to stand in front of God to ask for another year of life.

The Talmud refers to Elul as “days of favor” – a time when it’s easier to access God’s forgiveness, to shake off our bad habits and step out of the rut we may be in. It was the time when Moses ascended Mount Sinai to receive the second tablets and attain forgiveness after the sin of the Golden Calf.

Each day of the month of Elul we blow the shofar as a reminder – wake up! Rosh Hashanah is coming; now is the time to change.

Interestingly, as this video below explains, 30 days seems to be an optimum amount of time to commit to a new task, undaunted. We are more likely to live up to our resolution if we commit to it for 30 days. And those 30 days can bring about a real, lasting change.

So this week, take the 30-day Elul challenge and pick one mitzvah, one positive action that you know you can stick to for 30 days, and do it every day – no matter what. It could be to turn off your iPhone every night (or just at dinner), to learn something Jewish for 5 minutes a day, to give one family member a compliment every day.

After 30 days you’ll see the results, and come into Rosh Hashanah invigorated, ready to take on more. That’s the secret to Jewish spiritual growth – one consistent step at a time brings you to the top of the mountain.

August 3, 2013

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Visitor Comments: 6

(4) Yitz, August 7, 2013 2:32 AM


(3) ray, August 4, 2013 9:11 PM

30 ways of spiritual accounting

I recommend the 30 ways of spiritual accounting from duties of the heart. available here:

Nathalie, August 5, 2013 7:05 AM

Thank you!

I appreciate your recommendation. Chodesh Tov and Shana Tova to Klal Yisroel.

(2) Harry Pearle, August 4, 2013 6:54 PM

STOP Doing Something for 30 Days? (Like TV Habit)

Two years ago, I watched this neat TED video. It helped me to quit watching TV. Since then, I have watched less then ten TV shows. The ones I have seen have been special events, like the Presidential debates. So, maybe Matt Cutts is on to something.............However, I have not tried DOING something for 30 days. Perhaps it is easier to STOP, than to DO an activity................There may be a danger of trying to program ourselves, too much, without enough real motivation.............So I would take this advice with a 'grain of salt'..

Dvirah, August 6, 2013 4:47 PM

Try It...

You tell us that the first time you used this method it was a great success. Why then be so pessimistic? Try it the other way and if it doesn't work, you're at least no worse off than you were before. And if it does, it's another step upwards. Best of luck! - or in other words, Blessed be!

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