One afternoon - after another failed attempt to get motivated to exercise - I (accidentally) started my first mini habit. I initially committed to do one push-up, and it turned into a full workout. I was shocked. This "stupid idea" wasn't supposed to work. I was shocked again when my success with this strategy continued for months (and to this day). I had to consider that maybe I wasn't the problem in those 10 years of mediocre results. Maybe it was my prior strategies that were ineffective, despite being oft-repeated as "the way to change" in countless books and blogs.
I was right.
Is there a scientific explanation for this?
As I sought understanding, I found a plethora of scientific studies that had answers, with nobody to interpret them correctly. Based on the science - which you'll find peppered throughout Mini Habits - we've been doing it all wrong.
You can succeed without the guilt, intimidation, and repeated failure associated with such strategies as "getting motivated," New Year's Resolutions, or even "just doing it." In fact, you need to stop using those strategies if they aren't giving you great results. They don't work because they all require you to fight against your subconscious brain (a fight not easily won). It's only when you start playing by your brain's rules and taking your human limitations seriously--as mini habits show you how to do - that you can achieve lasting change.
©2013 Stephen Guise (P)2014 Stephen Guise
Perfect for those of us who have always side-eyed weird 'motivation gurus'
Simple way to get things done, no matter how you feel in the moment.
"Breaks Things Down Into Tiny Do-able Bits"
This isn't a book that will wow you with facts and research and science. Instead, it is a book that makes huge and often overwhelming goals possible. The theory and method presented are based on the author's personal experiences of creating change in his own life. I agree with other reviewers -- there is something strangely liberating about the idea of setting your goals so low that you can easily meet them. Then from these tiny goals bigger change begins and builds. Worth a listen if you need a new and simple approach for attacking the problem of feeling bogged down and want to start building new daily habits. A positive listen.
"Mini Habits May Work for You (and Myself)"
Although it is a small book and the writer tries hard to fill it up with scientific knowledge, the soul of Mini Habits is simple: create few-- up to 4-- mini habits, even laughable ones (like do one push up), and follow the script (or don't break the chain).
And yes, it may work.
I did something like that when I was writing my first book. At the time I was a resident at a cardiology hospital, my wife was pregnant, and I told myself: write one page a day and please don't break the chain. Most of the days I wrote 3 pages, and couldn't get hold of myself. I completed the book before my daughter was born.
Now for my second book I cannot write one page a day-- It seems too much effort. I have 2 kids, many patients to see, well, almost impossible (or so I think). And I postpone. I know that I could find time to write. Maybe if I told myself: "write 5 LINES each day" I could had completed my second book years ago.
Good idea, Stephen Guise!
"Surprised by how deeply helpful the thoughts in this book are"
I started out listening to this book thinking that it sounded kind of gimmicky, but halfway through things clicked and I saw what he was talking about in my own life. I already, accidentally, have a whole lot of mini habits in process, some good and some bad. The further into the book I got the more powerful the concept became as I realized this dynamic is already existing in my life and he is showing me how to tap into that dynamic and leverage it for increased productivity.
"Finished in one day (ironic, given the theme)"
Having just completed 7 books on the brain, habits and focus, this was the perfect book to sum it all up and take action. I am going to put measures in place to make sure I maintain the core principles.
No, because you don't have to listen repeatedly to get the idea.
It's not a fiction book, so no such thing to me.
The idea is very good. I have been using it for several days. The general idea is that you should stick to stupidly small habits, such as one push-up a day, instead of bigger ones that need more will power. The whole book is just using different words to rephrase this idea. Very repetitive. But anyway, it's a great idea, so the idea itself is worth a credit. I have used it for 3 days now, and actually I am more on top of everything because of the mini habits. Will see how this works in the long run.
"Procrastination In A Whole New Light!"
I enjoyed this book very much, including the narrator. And I asked myself this morning--after all the books I've read and listened to--why I was still procrastinating, checking off lists, putting lists into shorter lists, etc. etc. etc. Is it just me or does this book resonate with the very core of the problem, which is always the "getting started" part? This book is light (which I liked), but to the point. I began using it before I'd finished it, which was over two days. If you are someone who feels overwhelmed by the projects you want to do, I believe this book will help you. I'm sure I've never had a book get me moving so quickly and easily.
"Forget motivation - 'stupid small steps' are it"
Absolutely. I've read a lot of time management books in my career - and a lot about getting motivated, dealing with procrastination, etc. This book has an entirely new perspective that I found very helpful and refreshing. Development of habits is far more important than motivation for maintaining forward progress. Seems to be well researched.
n/a but I like the tone and humor of the author.
Penz is a good narrator for this author (who looks so young in his online posts that I might not have purchased the book if I had seen his picture first). On this topic, a natural instinct (at least for me) is that I want to hear from someone who's had more life/work experience.
It just surprised me at how it addressed an issue that I have that I've never seen addressed before: habits can take the emotion out of tasks so that you can do them whether you're "in the mood" or not.
I have read countless books on self-improvement. This book is incredible! Buy this book now. I had a habit of setting big goals. I would even break down the big goals, but Mini Habits makes it easy for you to succeed! Thank you Stephen Guise for a great book! Also, thanks to Daniel Penz the narrator of the book to make it so easy to listen to. The narrator can make or break a audiobook. Well this is a grand slam!
"Best self development book I know!"
My preferred genre of audio books is self development and this is by far the best Ive heard, because it so practical and actionable that you cannot fail if you apply the advice that it gives.
"Changed my life"
Very powerful knowledge that completely changed the way I think about creating new habits for my self. My mini habits have already begun to change the way I live, two weeks into them. This is a must read for anyone honestly.
"I'm a mini habits convert"
Life Changing System
It has already changed my life
I've tried a dozen self-help books and none have delivered. Mini Habits is so simple and easy, yet makes complete sense and even though I have only been doing the system for a short amount of time, I have already seen results beyond anything I've tried before. If you procrastinate horribly or just want to change your life for the better, then look no further.
"enjoyable listen with a good message"
bearing in mind this is non-fiction I would say alternative examples could be given as the text is sometimes very repetitive .
This had a very good message and presented a far more realistic approach to achieving goals/changing your life etc. It was however very repetitive and would have easily made a much smaller book. There seemed to be a lot of elaboration on ideas that was not really necessary.Having said that it was a good listen!
Had actually done some work prior to this book on small habits but it's certainly the way to go for coaches or clients both.
The brain does not like change so we must do regular small changes often to achieve new things - definitely worth a listen
"Wow, just wow!!!"
THE most life changing listen I've EVER enjoyed.
Ridiculously easy and such common sense. I feel so joyful that I happened across this gem. Thank you Stephen!
"Good ideas but irritating narrator"
start good habits "stupidly small".
one push up a day
Reasonalby argued case for starting good habits small and why we usualyy fail and NY resolutions dont work. The narrator was far too chirpy but that may be the tone of the book.Will give the theory a try.
"If you ever would be stuck in your life...."
If you ever would be stuck in your life, listen this book. You may start to finally unstuck you and your life! Good luck!
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