TWEAK YOUR ENVIRONMENT – BETTER ENVIRONMENT BETTER BEHAVIOR

“You don’t have to be the victim of your environment. You can also be the architect of it.” James Clear

“Man is largely a creature of habit, and many of his activities are more or less automatic reflexes from the stimuli of his environment.” G. Stanley Hall

Change agents frequently find that what appears to be a people problem is a situation problem. Instead of trying to change people’s attitudes, they tweak the environment and make change happen painlessly. Instead of relying on workers following proper procedures, safety engineers install guards and controls to prevent workers from taking shortcuts. They know that it’s easier to tweak the environment than to force compliance. We can likewise tweak our own environment to foster good habits and discourage bad ones. 

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THE MAGIC OF MINI HABITS

”Doing a little bit every day has a greater impact than doing a lot on one day. How much greater? Profoundly so, because a little bit every day is enough to grow into a lifelong foundational habit, and those are a big deal.” ― Stephen Guise

So, what is a mini habit? Stephen Guise, the creator of the mini habit concept, describes mini habits as stupid small versions of a habit you want to develop. Stephen was struggling to exercise. He felt overwhelmed by the prospect of a half-hour workout. He couldn’t get motivated, and he didn’t have enough willpower to train. Frustrated, he decided to shrink his workout.

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SHRINK THE COMMITMENT – SHRINK THE RESISTANCE

“Be the person with embarrassing goals and impressive results instead of one of the many people with impressive goals and embarrassing results.” Stephen Guise

Shrinking the commitment reduces our Elephant’s reluctance. We avoid becoming paralyzed by subjective fatigue. Chances are you will do more than the minimum requirement but never do less. Small commitments aren’t going to cause you to do less. It is counterintuitive, but these small commitments cause you to do more by making you more consistent. This commitment is a floor and not a ceiling. If you feel motivated to do more, that’s great. Willpower is going to get you going. Motivation will determine how far you go. Learn more about the Elephant & Rider Analogy. Continue reading SHRINK THE COMMITMENT – SHRINK THE RESISTANCE

REPETITION DOESN’T BUILD MOTIVATION – IT DILUTES IT

“We are not the problem. Our approach to change is. It’s a design flaw – not a personal flaw.” BJ Fogg

When we fail to create a habit, we blame ourselves for being lazy and unmotivated. It seems reasonable. If we were motivated, we’d do what we had planned to do? True, but motivation is an ineffective habit-forming strategy for two reasons. First, it depends on our emotional state. Emotions are difficult to regulate. Habits require consistency. Another reason motivation is a terrible strategy for developing habits is that it decreases over time. Continue reading REPETITION DOESN’T BUILD MOTIVATION – IT DILUTES IT