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Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results | [Stephen Guise]

Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results

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.
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Publisher's Summary

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

What Members Say

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  •  
    Sara 11-26-14
    Sara 11-26-14

    USA, listener since 2005

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3800
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    231
    196
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    "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.

    14 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    André ORLANDO, FL, United States 11-30-14
    André ORLANDO, FL, United States 11-30-14 Member Since 2011

    I love AUDIBLE! I never get mad at traffic jams and can listen to many different books, despite of my short time.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    269
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    "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!

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    turtlefarmgirl 11-24-14

    turtlefarmgirl

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Forget motivation - 'stupid small steps' are it"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    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.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    n/a but I like the tone and humor of the author.


    What does Daniel Penz bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    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.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    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.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Belinda Somewhere, CA 04-14-15
    Belinda Somewhere, CA 04-14-15 Member Since 2015

    Marble Book

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great idea"
    Would you listen to Mini Habits again? Why?

    No, because you don't have to listen repeatedly to get the idea.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Mini Habits?

    It's not a fiction book, so no such thing to me.


    Have you listened to any of Daniel Penz’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Meredith Rio Rancho, New Mexico, United States 10-10-14
    Meredith Rio Rancho, New Mexico, United States 10-10-14 Member Since 2012

    Blue Dome Mimi

    HELPFUL VOTES
    23
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    11
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    "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.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lexlee 08-05-14
    Lexlee 08-05-14 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great writing but a bit over acted by narrator"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I will partially agree with the reviews saying the narrator's fake voices were distracting but I would still listen to this book. This book doesn't give the history or science of habits but it does something more important. This book shows you the small steps you can take on a daily basis to change your life in major ways. Listen to this book if you want to change your life by doing things things which sound way to easy to work. I am an example that they do work.


    8 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas 07-22-14
    Thomas 07-22-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Best Goal Book I've Read"

    If you've read at least 3 self help books you know that reading self help books won't change your life UNLESS you take action. If you've ever set a goal to do something huge and feel demoralized when you don't complete it, this book will teach you how to gain momentum and accomplish bigger goals by making your goals "stupid small."

    This is the best self help book I've ever read because it taught me why big goals don't work for me and, more importantly it taught me how to get myself to take the actions I need to succeed.

    10 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debra San Jose, CA, United States 06-17-15
    Debra San Jose, CA, United States 06-17-15 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Practical, practical, practical"

    If you're extremely busy and want to achieve goals but are too overwhelmed to make huge strides (like we all want to do), listen to this book. One of the first "how to books" that helps one keep focused on building and succeeding.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James Portland, TN USA 06-12-15
    James Portland, TN USA 06-12-15 Listener Since 2005
    ratings
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    5
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    "Make it stupid easy!"

    Loved this! Sure you get the idea by reading the title of the book, but I loved how the book went into explaining WHY mini habits work. It helps me know how to fight my lack of discipline! A perfect solution for the dreamer in me that struggles with the doing part.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ana 06-09-15
    Ana 06-09-15 Member Since 2012
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    4
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    "Magic!"

    I really like the strategy of mini habits. I just finished reading the book and my life ia already easier.. It's a kind of "medication" for procrastination.

    I don't know if it works for everybody, but it's so simple I think everyone should try it.
    Easy listening, easy understanding and easy executing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Jon Scriven
    6/10/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I'm a mini habits convert"
    If you could sum up Mini Habits in three words, what would they be?

    Life Changing System


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It has already changed my life


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Aggy83
    4/18/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "If you ever would be stuck in your life...."
    If you could sum up Mini Habits in three words, what would they be?

    If you ever would be stuck in your life, listen this book. You may start to finally unstuck you and your life! Good luck!


    0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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