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As I have noted in print, I enjoy mulling the timing of launching self-improvement schemes.

Should I tweak my exercise habits starting on Groundhog Day?

Would it be a good idea to stop watching TV as of Bloomsday?

Should I start going to bed earlier beginning on Bennington Battle Day? And so on.

Most of these plans never really lead to lasting change, of course. That no longer comes as a surprise. But like many of us, I still enjoy contemplating the possibility of doing better.

But buoyed by the early success of a modest New Year's resolution, I recently found myself in the market for a new lifestyle improvement. I had not determined what behavior to modify when I nonetheless discovered the perfect time to do it.

The delayed National Hockey League season begins in a few hours. Why not, I thought, try to make some change on the first day of the NHL season and see if I could stick with it until one team lifts the Stanley Cup.

Maybe not having a finish line is what doomed so many previous efforts. This could be perfect. And they have been saying it will be a shortened hockey season, so how taxing could my challenge be?

Then I took a closer look at the NHL schedule. The final round of the playoffs this year might not end until June 28.

That's more than five months away. So much for having an end in sight.

Still, visualizing the last days of June gave me an idea for a new plan.

I've long thought of July 1st as Second Half of the Year Day. Maybe that's when I'll start doing or not doing whatever finally occurs to me as the latest much-needed reform.

Feel free to join me.

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About this blog

Features writer Paul Turner is a columnist for The Spokesman-Review in the Features department. He writes "The Slice" column, which appears six times a week and produces general features stories for the Today section.

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