🎧 CM 131: James Clear on Making and Breaking Habits

Listened CM 131: James Clear on Making and Breaking Habits

Whether we want to adopt good habits or avoid bad ones, we need to think beyond willpower or setting bigger goals. Instead, James Clear, author of the book, Atomic Habits: An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits and Break Bad Ones, argues that the secret is designing a system of small, repeatable habits. He challenges us to ask ourselves, β€œHow can we make these small changes that we layer on top of each other – these little 1% improvements or tiny advantages – and in the process of integrating them all into a larger system, end up making some really remarkable progress?”

Through compelling stories and brain research, James teaches us how to design game-changing habits and sustainable systems. In addition, he shares ways we can leverage environmental factors and addictive tendencies to our advantage. Finally, he helps us see how a commitment to daily habits leads to the identity we seek: β€œEvery action you take is like a vote for the person that you want to become. Doing one push up or writing one sentence or reading one page, it’s not going to transform you right away. But it does cast a vote for being that kind of person, for reinforcing that kind of identity.”

James Clear talks with Gayle Allen about his new book Atomic Habits. Some of the take-aways from the conversation were:

  • The most important aspect to behaviour change is identity
  • Four stages to a habit: Cue, craving, response, reward/outcome
  • A high level framework involves making habits obvious, attractive, easy and satisfying. If you are trying to break a habit, then invert this.
  • If you want a habit to be a part of your life, make it a part of your environment.
  • We need habits of action, rather than motion. This is about showing up.

I think that this book would have a lot of implications for education and change.

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