Different Thinking – Different Results

When people fail to change, they blame their willpower. Willpower is the scapegoat of people that needlessly subject themselves to temptation. No one has enough willpower to subject themselves unnecessarily to temptation. If you examine the environment of disciplined people, you will discover they engineered it to eliminate the need to exert willpower. They don’t have more willpower. They avoid the need to use it.  Willpower is an ineffective change strategy. Shaping the Path, on the other hand, is very effective. Commitment eliminates the need for willpower. When we shape our environment correctly, we discourage bad habits. We remove temptations and make good habits the default by making them easier to do, and bad habits more difficult. The more committed we are to shaping our environment, the less willpower we’ll need. The best way to change your life is by changing something you do each day. Change your habits, change your life! Nothing is stronger than habit. Continue reading Different Thinking – Different Results

The Golden Rule of Habit Change

Cues in our environment trigger a response. We need to pre-decided what our new response will be. Our Rider cannot hesitate to guide the Elephant down a new path, instead of performing the well-condition one. We must give our Elephant a new way forward. Instead of telling ourselves not to do something, we need to have an alternative action ready to go. Telling ourselves not to do something, fixates our mind on doing it. When we attempt to suppress a thought, we make things worse. We begin to fixate on it instead. Psychologists call this Ironic Theory. Continue reading The Golden Rule of Habit Change

How to Break a Bad Habit

I am as vulnerable to bad habits as anyone. On the weekends, I typically indulge in a drink or two, but a year ago, I developed the habit of drinking every night. It began with me having a drink after an unusually stressful day; then it progressed to an everyday occurrence. What was once a weekend ritual had become a nightly one. At the core … Continue reading How to Break a Bad Habit

Half of what we do each day are HABITS, so why not learn more about them

Achieving a healthy body weight and being fit is not a New Year’s resolution or a 12-week program; it is a lifestyle born out of habit. Approximately 45% of our daily activities are habits. The basal ganglia control the performance of repetitive daily activities which frees our conscious mind to focus on higher-level decisions. Our prefrontal cortex pawns off these repetitive tasks to conserve cognitive bandwidth. Habits allow us to avoid mental exhaustion by reducing our cognitive load. When we are learning new behaviors, it can be mentally exhausting because it requires both our cerebral cortex and basal ganglia. Our easily exhausted cerebral cortex (“Conscious Brain”) is forced to do the heavy lifting while the basal ganglia go along for the ride memorizing the new pattern. As the behavior becomes automated through repetition, the more resilient basal ganglia (“primitive brain”) take over, allowing our conscious brain to check out.  Continue reading Half of what we do each day are HABITS, so why not learn more about them

You Don’t Need a NEW DIET

Want to start eating better and losing weight? You don’t need a new diet. You do not even need to start exercising. You just need to keep a food log. People that keep a food journal lose twice as much weight as those that do not. Why is it so effective? Simple. Keeping a food journal forces us to confront our choices. Monitoring improves our performance through increased awareness. Continue reading You Don’t Need a NEW DIET