Ten Facts you can learn from Atomic Habits

Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones is a bestselling self-help book written by James Clear. The book has won many awards such as Amazon’s Best Books of the Year, and Audible’s Best Nonfiction of the Year, and was a finalist for the Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year Awards. It teaches readers how to create and maintain good habits while breaking bad ones, through a series of practical strategies and techniques. Clear argues that the key to making progress is to focus on the process rather than the outcome and to make small changes rather than trying to overhaul your entire life at once.

He explains that to create a new habit, it’s important to make it easy to start and to make it rewarding. James also explains that to break a bad habit, you need to make it difficult to do and make the rewards less appealing. He provides readers with a step-by-step guide to creating a habit-forming environment and offers strategies for making new habits stick and breaking old habits. The book combines personal stories, scientific studies, and practical advice that help readers understand how habits work and how to change them.

Here are ten facts that you can learn from Atomic Habits book –
  1. Start small by making tiny changes to your behaviour, rather than trying to overhaul your entire life at once.
  2. Make it easy to start by creating an environment that supports your new habit, and by reducing friction and making the habit as simple as possible.
  3. Reward yourself for taking action towards your habit, as it will help to reinforce the behaviour.
  4. Break bad habits by making them difficult to do and reducing the rewards associated with the habit.
  5. Remember that it’s not about perfection, but about progress.
  6. Build an environment that supports your habits, by designing cues that trigger the habit and rewards that reinforce the habit.
  7. Focus on identity-based habits, which align with who you want to be as a person, rather than outcome-based habits, which focus on what you want to achieve.
  8. Use the “two-minute rule” to make starting a new habit as easy as possible. Continue reading for “Two-minute rule”
  9. Use the “four laws of behaviour change” to make new habits stick: cue, craving, response, and reward. Continue reading “Four laws of behaviour change”.
  10. Reflect on your progress regularly and celebrate your successes. Don’t beat yourself up over slip-ups, instead focus on getting back on track.

What is the “two-minute rule”?

The rule states that:

  • When you’re trying to create a new habit, it should take less than two minutes to complete the first instance of the behaviour.
  • By keeping the first instance of the behaviour small, it’s less intimidating and easier to start.

Here are some examples of how to apply the two-minute rule:

  • If your goal is to read more, start by committing to reading just two pages a day.
  • If you want to start exercising, begin by doing just two minutes of stretching or jogging.

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The Four Laws of Behaviour Change are:

  1. The Cue: A cue is a trigger that initiates the habit. It can be something you see, hear, feels, or think. Understanding the cue that triggers your habit can help you change or avoid it.
  2. Craving is the desire or motivation to make the habit. Understanding the craving that drives your habit can help you change or avoid it.
  3. The Response: The response is the actual habit or behaviour. Understanding the response can help you to change it or avoid it.
  4. The Reward: The reward is the benefit or outcome that you get from the habit. Understanding the reward can help you to change it or avoid it. By identifying the cue, craving, response and reward of a habit, you can make small changes to the response to better align it with your goals and values.

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