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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

    Love audio books & reading reviews

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2705
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    209
    175
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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.

    9 of 9 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
    188
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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!

    3 of 3 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
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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.

    4 of 5 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.


    1 of 1 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.


    7 of 10 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.

    8 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Parra 03-21-15
    David Parra 03-21-15 Listener Since 2010

    Addict to AudioBooks, Spanish-Speaking I improved my English by listening Audible!!. Work as Real Estate Manager At a Retail Company I like Fiction Novels, Bussiness and Investment Books, anything that help me to improve my self and the ones surrounding me

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    "Simple but powerful metodology"

    Lately I,m very interested in habit formation, this book delivers the easiest metodology to implement and get results for the average person.

    It is a must read of you want to change your life for good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Parham 03-19-15
    C. Parham 03-19-15
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    "Great idea"

    I have been trying the mini habits only a few days so cannot speak of long term success yet. However it's a well-written book with logic and real-life experiences on its side. It was entertaining and well-read. The narrator was very good too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    basementjack Chicago, IL USA 03-17-15
    basementjack Chicago, IL USA 03-17-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Fantastic narrator"

    Narrator is fantastic. Books is simple, has one basic point, set microsomes goals and do them daily and benefit from exceeding the goal.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Chula Vista, CA, United States 03-13-15
    Richard Chula Vista, CA, United States 03-13-15 Member Since 2011

    -RC-

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "This Is Incredible for Procrastination!"
    If you could sum up Mini Habits in three words, what would they be?

    Useful, Insightful, and Essential.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    There are no characters within this title.


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

    I have not listened to any other works by this author.


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

    Mostly of "Eureka" whenever something I didn't notice in my life was brought up.


    Any additional comments?

    This book teaches you how to feasibly do important tasks daily and also explains in detail why it works and the reasons other methods fail. As the title suggests, it is done by making the said goal in question so small that your ego won't let you fail and although it sounds like nothing the idea is that you are doing said action so consistently over time that it becomes a habit and thus easier to do without having to drag yourself to do it. The added bonus is that at times when you have the "I don't feel like it's" the goal is so underwhelming that it is too easy to not do it.

    My problem is that when I wanted to do something every day I was making the mistake of setting my daily goal bigger than I thought it was and so it was incredibly hard to keep doing it every day consistently. Making the goal very small and following some of the extra advice this book offers have done wonders for my productivity. I wish I knew of this method many, many years ago!

    This book is essential to anyone who has trouble reaching goals, procrastinating, keeping priorities, and even if you don't have those problems you should still give this book a listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • 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 0 people found this review helpful
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