Tiny Habits: The Small Changes That Change Everything by B J Fogg
|Tiny Habits: The Small Changes That Change Everything by B J Fogg|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: Small changes which you can make to help you achieve your goals and which lead on to bigger things. Accessible and very readable. Highly recommended.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 320||Date: December 2019|
|Publisher: Virgin Books|
|External links: Author's website|
Go on, admit it - you're not quite perfect. You still have those odd, quirky, even loveable (to you) habits that seem to annoy other people. Other people, of course, are sorely afflicted by some dreadful flaws which they could so easily correct, if only they would make just a little bit of effort. Or put another way, I get cross with myself because I forget to do things or do some actions more than I should and no matter how I try to make what seem to be quite monumental changes I never quite seem to get to grips with the concepts. I constantly fail and then I get cross with myself for failing. Lack of willpower is another burden to add to the list.
Well, the answer is at hand. People do want to make changes and then blame themselves for not being able to do so, but BJ Fogg has the answer: tiny habits. The first thing he tells us is that it isn't our fault. It's our approach to change which is at fault - as he says it's a design flaw - not a personal flaw. There are two things to be clear about straight away: information doesn't make changes and nor does repetition. You can tell people about the perils of drinking and smoking until you're blue in the face, but they're still going to drink and smoke. You can repeat filling the dishwasher but it's still not going to become a habit unless you do some other work on the action.
To successfully change behaviours you need to do three things:
Stop judging yourself.
Take your aspirations and break them down into tiny behaviours.
Embrace mistakes as discoveries and use them to move forward.
BJ takes us through the process of breaking behaviours down into tiny actions, building prompts and building them into regular habits. You can apply this to yourself, or to other people, on the basis that you are helping them to become the people they want to be, though you might want to check that with them first!
I had a quiet feeling of confidence as I read this book. I could see it working. There suddenly seemed to be an easy way of ensuring that I drink more water, of getting out for more walks, of becoming a healthier me.
There were one or two examples where I wasn't entirely convinced. If you get cross with your teenage daughter for leaving the fridge door open, the next time she gets a yoghurt out of the fridge and leaves the door open you should compliment her on her choice of a healthy snack. What struck me was that she'd probably be getting a coke - and that the fridge door is still open. Personally, I'd have ensured that there was an alarm on the fridge door. It's a minor quibble in an otherwise very readable and informative book. I'd like to thank the publishers for letting Bookbag have a copy to review.
Like more on similar lines? We can recommend Atomic Habits by James Clear. You might also enjoy 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don't Do by Amy Morin.
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