Tiny Habits – Motivation and its Limitations l EP# 75

Apr 26, 2021 | 0 comments

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In today’s episode meal prep expert and healthy habit enthusiast, Allison Schaaf discusses why motivation is unreliable when it comes to forming lasting habits, and tools you can use instead. She also walks you through a quick and fun exercise to help you pinpoint exactly which new behaviors you need to implement to reach your goals.

This framework is based on BJ Fogg’s book, Tiny Habits.

The Difficulty of Relying on Motivation:


Motivation is the least reliable part of behavior change. When you are highly motivated, you can do hard things. The problem is that motivation inevitably shifts over time. When motivation wavers, you need your new behavior to be easy and to have a reliable prompt if you want to keep it up.

What to Do Instead:


Instead of relying on motivation, focus on behavior matching. This means finding the right behavior(s) to focus on to reach your goals.

What is your aspiration and what is the outcome you want?

Examples might include: I want to eat healthier to feel better. I want to cook at home more to improve my health. I want to have a dinner plan to create a more peaceful mealtime with my family.

Once you have a clear vision of your desired outcome, you need to identify which behaviors can help you reach that goal. The following exercise can help!

Tiny Habits Exercise – A Swarm of Behaviors

  1. Set a timer for 5 minutes.
  2. Use some paper or a whiteboard and write your aspiration / desired outcome in the middle of a circle.
  3. Write as many behaviors as you can think of to help you get to that goal within the 5 minute timeframe.
  4. Spend 20 minutes going through and deciding which behaviors are one-time behaviors and which are potential new habits you can create.
  5. Determine which behaviors are high-impact versus low-impact. Determine which are feasible / realistic for your life. Target the high-impact, realistic behaviors to implement.

Resources mentioned in this podcast:

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