How to make a habit stick (and it’s not about trying harder) | The Seattle TimesAs the author says, the forces here presented are based on thousands of peer-reviewed studies. Research has shown that people have a better chance of succeeding at something if they take small steps. Even if they know they should take it slowly they often fail because their steps are still too big. Take really small steps in the beginning. Instead, set the smaller step of meeting three potential new clients this week.
Trial of the Stick of Joseph
When I first started to focus on building healthier habits a few years ago, one of the biggest mistakes I made was to ask too much of myself. I would go from reading hardly ever to attempting to read one book per week. Or from getting up at 9 a. The distance between where I was starting and where I wanted to be was so great that I would fail a lot. And each failure made it harder to succeed the next day. At their heart, as James Clear explains , habits are about routines.
Many years ago, when I was studying law in school, I had an old professor who had the peculiar notion that he should never give his students a written examination, but rather should let them demonstrate their knowledge of law under conditions approximating those of a courtroom. Since he had been a judge for many years, he could devise a courtroom condition very similar to an actual case. Consequently, there being great numbers of budding attorneys on the one side being able to do very rapid and thorough research work was a great advantage to that side but a handicap to the individual standing alone who did not have the advantage of many minds working as one. It seemed that what one of these young fellows in the group could not think of, someone else did. I had absolutely no confidence in my own ability to either defend or prosecute any case I could think of against the entire balance of that law class.
The holidays were a time of spending, eating and drinking way more than you should. In other words, it was the season for breaking too many good habits and developing even more bad new ones. Clear is not a psychologist or behavioral scientist. After an MBA and a few attempts to launch online businesses, including an iPhone app and a small business marketing site, Clear started writing about habits and behavior change six years ago, fueled by reading, interviews with researchers, and his own experience recovering from a life-threatening sports injury in high school. He developed a wide following — more than , email newsletter subscribers, he says, and has done speaking or consulting with teams like the Detroit Lions and Pittsburgh Pirates and with businesses such as Lululemon and Top Golf.