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The 4 Ways to Successfully Adopt New Habits

Adopting new ideas, or methods is difficult to do, just ask anyone trying to start an ongoing exercise program or diet. 

And, there are work habits (can I possibly NOT spend most of my day dealing with emails?) and scheduling issues (can I live untethered to my smartphone for an evening or a day) as well. 

Here's some insight on how you can increase the likelihood of successfully adopting some of those new habits.

And please if you find this helpful, Pass It On, somewhere out there there's someone who's looking for advice just like the video below. 

Inaction vs. Wrong Action

I can't take responsibility or credit for the title of this blog post. 

So let's give credit where credit is due. 

Inaction leads to failure more often than wrong action.
— Morgan Newman at Inc.'s GrowCo Conference

No matter what it was that lead to Mr. Newman's profound perception, the application of his perception to Wealth Management is unmistakable. 

To be sure, there are many people who have justified their inaction by telling themselves and others, that their inaction is a direct attempt to avoid the wrong action. 

It's not can make a mistake by doing nothing, simply because doing nothing is an active decision whether you think it is or not. 

You know what else is not true?

  • There'll alway be time
  • The best is yet to come
  • That'll never happen to you
  • You did it once you can do it again
  • Build a better mouse trap and they will come
  • It won't look anything like that when you get there
  • It won't matter anyway
  • It's never too late to start

Should we go on?  Hardly. 

Waiting to get it "just right" most likely means that what you've gotten just right is your ability to get it mostly wrong. 

Pass It On Series: A Getting Better Mindset

Pass It On Minimal.png

We're all guilty of being hard on ourselves. 

Is it possible that being too hard on yourself can actually be deterimental?

Based on this presentation from Heidi Grant Halvorson, if we'd just focus on getting better and not being "best" we'd have a greater chance of an expansive life of personal and professional growth. 

The Bad Thing About Good Advice

Good advice is seldom understood or appreciated.

And, I think that there's a good reason for that. The reason is that what makes for good advice is often viewed as a "bad" thing. 

Seth Godin recently wrote about the attributes of good advice. 

I was drawn to the posting I guess, because "good advice" is what I envision that I do.  And, because I am naturally inclined to learn and I can always benefit from good advice, so I read the posting to see what the takeaway would be. 

No matter what you do, be it advisor, parent, teacher, mentor or leader, I think that this piece has in it, a few "gems" I think we can all benefit from;

  • Good advice is not what you want to hear but what you need to hear
  • It is not imaginary, but practical
  • Not based on fear, but on possibility
  • Not designed to make you feel better, designed to make you better

Those points resonated with me. 

The problem however, remains this 

  • People are prone to want to hear what they want to hear, not what they need to
  • Absent a degree of "social" or other proof, fallacy masquerades pretty well as "fact" allowing for the imaginary to crowd out the practical
  • Avoiding fear prevents a relationship with the possible
  • Feeling better is usually going to be preferred over "making you better"

I see it all the time. 

If the original blog were the reality, there'd be more people planning their lives based on what needs to done, what's practical, what's possible and what will make them better. 

There just isn't much of that going on. 

There needs to be more. 





4 Lessons About Collaboration

Dan Sullivan, owner and founder of The Strategic Coach calls it, "rugged individualisum."

It's the notion that we can go it alone, we're relying only on ourselves, our talents, our tenacity and our creativity.  All good traits to be sure, but is "rugged individualisum" a wise business choice?

In this article from Fast Company Magazine, Jeff Havens talks about why you specifically shouldn't try to do everything yourself. 


Well, it's been over a month now since the plethora of New Years Resolutions were made, and I was wondering how you're doing on accomplishing those "goals" you set for yourself?

Setting goals, whether it's to start a new habit or finally get something done that's been on your to-do list for way too long, plays out many times in an all too typical fashion. 

At the outset, our energy for getting things done is at it's zenith. We can envision all the good that will come from our efforts, and early on, it all seems well worth the sacrifice that we'll have to make. 

But all to often what plays out in real life, is that we make "some" progress towards the goal and then there's an energy shift.  What use to be the energy to accomplish our goal and nothing less, becomes a division of energy.  Part of that energy gets consumed in rationalizing in our mind why being only part way to the goal is good enough. After all, we've lost half of the weight we'd originally planned but we feel better and our clothes fit a bit nicer so that's a plus. The remainder of our energy gets used doing everything within our power not to slip back to where we were before we ever started.  Odd, that our desire to actually meet our goal is all but lost, but only because we never purposely direct our energy back to "accomplishment" not progress. 

In personal finance, I refer to this often as the "knowing v. doing" gap. I can't tell you the number of people that I've worked with who now had teenage children and yet, they hadn't ever gotten their estate documents in order.  Their Wills don't even reference the kids, because the document that they have was drafted before they were borne. In conversation, these folks can recite, title and verse, why they need to update the document, who would have done it were it ever to have been finished, the importance of having it done, the reasons behind having it done, etc. 

You can tell that the tone of confidence in their voice about the issue comes from a place of "doing" not of knowing. For them, knowing that it should be done, knowing how it should be done, knowing that it can be done is the same thing as having actually done it.

Except that it actually isn't.

No matter where you're stuck, getting back on track isn't all that hard. You just need to redirect your energy and focus it back on attaining your goal, not merely moving towards it.  Accept nothing less than "getting it done." Expect nothing less of yourself than you will do it. 

Life in the abyss of compromise and rationalization is a dead-end. 

Now get back out there and start getting it done. 

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