Take tiny steps to make big changes

by | Dec 16, 2013 | Blog | 0 comments

pink baby sneakersWant to make a big meaningful change?

Take itsy bitty actions every day.

“Believe in baby steps,” is the mantra of  the psychologist BJ Fogg who developed the breakthrough Tiny Habits® method.  

As you take tiny steps, you start changing little by little. These small changes help you build momentum and over time you’ve made a transformation.

Even better, the smaller and slower you make the change, the more it sticks. So you improve your chances of lasting behavior change.  

This Tiny Habits® method has worked for me and thousands of others around the world.

Two years ago this week, I signed up for Tiny Habits® after seeing a tweet from BJ. He was looking for people interested in trying out his method. He had been practicing it with himself and close friends, and was ready to try it with others.

That week—in the middle of the holiday season—I embarked on a life-changing journey. By following BJ’s directions, I created and adopted three new habits in five days.

One of those habits I’ve been doing more than 730 days in a row. Another one I’ve done about 700 times (two weeks of vacation per year). As for the third habit, I do it every now and then. (It’s much harder to do because it involves others’ collaboration.)

Thanks to Tiny Habits®, my dentist, dental hygienist, and posturist are all happy with me and my behavior.  I now regularly floss my teeth and do my stretching exercises, which eluded me for years.

Having learned the skill of developing habits, I’ve continued to adopt other habits over the past two years. As a result, my productivity, work performance and overall well being have improved.

This month, I’ve completed the new certification training to become a Tiny Habits® Coach.

This program and the behavior it encourages are the exact opposite of the BHAG  (big, hairy, audacious goal) so popular in some organizations.

For example, two years ago when I signed up, I had no vision that I would become a Tiny Habits® fan, much less a Tiny Habits® coach.

Instead, I had the desire to do something different. Not the willpower, just the desire.

Tiny Habits® is so powerful because of these three foundational actions.  

  1. You focus on creating a habit that you want.
  2. You take simple baby steps.
  3. You set yourself up for success.

Granted, it isn’t always as easy to build this foundation for you and your team members in an organizational setting.

However, you probably can improve on what’s happening now. Think about it.

Even if people have the will and skill to make a change, it’s often too  hard for them to get over the hill and do it. Too many roadblocks are in their way.

What to do?

Step back, redesign your change course, teach people the skill of creating habits, help them adapt their environment to help make the habits stick, and then provide encouragement and accountability. That way the change sticks.

This is what I do as a Tiny Habits® coach. (For more about my journey and my successes, check out Success! Adopting 3 tiny habits and Success! Sustaining tiny habits.)

Instead of making New Year’s Resolutions this year—which tend to peter out by Super Bowl Sunday—join me in doing Tiny Habits®. Little by little, you can achieve big change that sticks. What are you waiting for?


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