“Changing Habits: How To Create Healthy Habits” – Wake Up Productive by Eben Pagan

Habits and how to create them.

All right, let’s learn about how to create habits that serve us in our lives and in our businesses. I did an interview recently with Tony Robbins, and one of the things that he said in the interview, and I’m paraphrasing, is that the quality of our habits and our rituals is the quality of our lives. Now what did Tony mean by this? He meant that if we don’t have high quality habits and we don’t make them into rituals, we don’t focus on these things and create them consciously, that a bunch of other stuff will sneak into our life. We’ll get distracted, our minds will get taken off on things, we’ll worry about stuff, and we’ll never get the important things done.

On the other hand, if we habitualize all of the important things and actually create conscious rituals around them, then all the other stuff will take care of itself. In fact, the more high quality habits and rituals you create, the more it kind of squeezes out all of that other stuff that distracts you from your life.

So the next question is how do you create habits? I saw an interesting piece of research recently that said that we only get a little bit of willpower in our lives and most of us just go through the same habitual things day-in, day-out, month-in, month-out, year after year. We kind of do the same thing, we think the same thoughts, and we have the same patterns with other people. In other words, we are creatures of habit, but most of us never learn how to change our habits with the little bit of willpower we do get. We don’t usually focus it on changing our habits. And that’s really the equation, that’s the magic formula, is to take the willpower that we get and focus it on making a new habit.

One of the things I learned from Tony Schwartz, the co-author of The Power of Full Engagement is that it’s important to only create one new habit at a time. If we try to create more than one new habit, what happens is we get all stressed out and freaked out and we just fall into our old patterns and we never actually do it. So one new habit at a time, that’s the rule, and what I’ve found works really well for me is to try to make the new habits earlier in the day. It’s a lot easier to take a habit that you’ve all ready created and that’s all ready running, and kind of move it a little bit later in the day than it is to create a new habit later in the day.

So for example, if you wanna focus your time in uninterrupted blocks, start by focusing the first hour of your day in an uninterrupted focused block, every single day where you’re working on something important, make it a habit, make it a ritual. In our company, one of the things that we do is our teams start each day with a little ritual of a 10 or 15-minute call. Each team goes through what’s going on in their world, what their problems are, what are the roadblocks and what are the updates. Everybody on the team reports in and it’s a ritual, it’s a habit, and it’s very high value because what it does is it synchronizes everyone, let’s everyone know what any news is for the day, what’s coming, and also allows people to connect up with each other in one place.

So they know that if I’m trying to reach that person, the longest I have to wait is until tomorrow morning, it’s a very high value habit. Now we do it as many small groups, and it has yielded tremendous results. To get this thing started took a lot of work, actually to do all of these, each one took a lot of work because everyone’s all ready in a routine and everyone says, “I don’t know if I wanna do it. I don’t know if that has any value,” and then after a month or six weeks of doing it, everyone can’t imagine doing it any other way because it just becomes a routine, it becomes part of the deal.

Now it would be a lot easier, by the way, if we wanted to keep doing that but do it later in the day. It would be a lot easier as a team to take that and move it to 4:00 p.m. instead of in the morning than it would be to start it off at 4:00 p.m. Why? Because later in the day, more things come into your life, it’s harder to get things done, harder to keep yourself focused, and you’ve burned up a lot of your willpower. So to start habits, start the habit immediately. My friend Wyatt Woodsmall says, “There’s only two rules for creating a habit, start now and don’t deviate.”

So start right now, don’t start in a week or two weeks, start right now, start today or start tomorrow, start tomorrow morning. Plan out the new habit that you want to create, put it into place, and start doing it immediately, and then don’t deviate. Whatever you do, make sure you do the new habit every day, you have to do it every day for at least 30 days for it to catch, for it to become a part of the way things are, and for you to feel pulled into it. So there are a couple of techniques for creating new habits in your life. Put them into action now and notice the results that they help you achieve.

And finally, if you’d like to learn how to really master time management and productivity, learn how to keep yourself focused, learn how to eliminate procrastination for good, and learn how to create positive habits and eliminate negative ones. Just go to WakeUpProductive.com right now to watch my 47-minute video on how to manage yourself and your time and how to make yourself dramatically more productive.

The video is worth $100.00, but you can watch it for free by just visiting WakeUpProductive.com, entering your name and e-mail address and opting in. Of course, I’ll also send you many more valuable, free video trainings and I’ll also send you private invitations to listen to me interviewing some of the top experts in the world on business, marketing, success, and productivity, all for free. Just go to WakeUpProductive.com, enter your name and e-mail address to get it all right now.

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