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Habit Stacking: How to Build New Habits by Taking Advantage of Old Ones

https://jamesclear.com/habit-stacking

jamesclear.com

Habit Stacking: How to Build New Habits by Taking Advantage of Old Ones
In 2007, researchers at Oxford University started peering into the brains of newborn babies. What they found was surprising. After comparing the newborn brains to the normal adult human, the researchers realized that the average adult had 41 percent fewer neurons than the average newborn. 1 At first glance, this discovery didn't make sense.

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Habit Stacking

One of the best ways to build a new habit is to identify a current habit you already do each day and then stack your new behavior on top - habit stacking.

Habit stacking is a special form of an implementation intention. Rather than pairing your new habit with a particular time and location, you pair it with a current habit.

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Habit stacking

Habit stacking

Habit stacking means adding new habits onto existing ones - to the things you already automatically do every day.

After waking up in the morning, you might put on a cup...

Adding a new habit to your life

  • Identify a habit that you do every day. Make a list of all your current habits, to identify which would be suitable to stack new habits onto. It could be anything, as long as you perform it consistently. This habit will serve as your cue to start your new habit.
  • Add the new habit right afterwards.
  • When you’re creating a new habit, make things as easy as possible. It’s recommended to make new habits so easy that you’re able to do them, no matter how tired or unmotivated you are.

Habit Ladder

This is a system that is automated by you. It is called a habit ladder because, from the time you wake up to finishing your first work task of the day, you're climbing up one rung at a t...

How Habits Work

A habit - a mini-system that once you create, becomes automatic to your body, with minimal interference from the brain.

The Habit Loop is a breakdown of a habit put it into three sections:

  • Cue: A certain trigger that awakens the habit
  • Routine: The action you perform without thinking.
  • Reward: The change you experience making you want to do more of the same.

Making a Habit Ladder

Keep a trigger cue ready and stack up the routine in such a way that your tasks become a habitual routine without any friction, each trigger cue and routine stacked over the next one.

Example: Put on running shoes instead of slippers in the morning and that's your cue to go out for a walk, then when you are back and feeling sweaty, that's your cue to take a bath.

How to Build a New Habit

  1. Start with an incredibly small habit, one that is easy enough that you don't need motivation to do it
  2. Increase your habit in very small ways -...

Jim Rohn

Jim Rohn

"Success is a few simple disciplines, practiced every day; while failure is simply a few errors in judgment, repeated every day."