Much has been researched, written, podcasted and pontificated about habit formation. Deep within the human psyche resides an enduring fascination to look better, feel better, sleep better, live better, love better. That’s the good news. Yet there is bad news: most attempts at behavior change end in the white flag of surrender.
- 25% of people quit their New Year’s resolution after the first week
- 45% quit by the end of January
- Only 9% will have stuck with their previous year’s goal by December 31
The reasons for failure are diverse and range from unrealistic goals to forgetting to keep track to loneliness and even having too many resolutions.
Although this app is named HABBIT and we foremost confront issues of unconscious routines and behaviors – commonly known as habits – the process for intentional modification of behaviors is in large part a question of performance training. You can change your habits by approaching the challenge as a training problem. And better, you can train for new skills, powers, capabilities and independence by making intentional habits of your daily behaviors. That’s what HABBIT is all about.
HABBIT the Game is a multi-level training program. We start with daily habits and ultimately aspire toward specialized skills, rooted inner work, endless possibilities and limitless potentialities. Some advice for eager or first-time HABBIT players include:
Set SMART Goals
Forming proper goals is crucially important in the successful addition or subtraction of a new behavior. Believe it or not, the specific words you use in declaring your goals can set you off on the right or wrong path. So informed design is the first place to start. Try the SMART goal structure:
- SSpecific. This is the direct action you will take. "Run", "Meditate" or "Asleep By…."
- MMeasurable. Put a number on the goal or make it binary. "Do 30 Pushups" or "No Phone."
- AAttainable. Make the goal milestone easy to accomplish. Focus on consistency over strain.
- RRelevance. Ensure the goal makes sense in light of your larger desired outcomes.
- TTime-bound. Put a date, deliverable or deadline on it.
- Exercise for 15 minutes
- Complete 10 minutes physical therapy
- In bed no later than 10pm
- Contact one friend today for non-work reasons
- Place my phone out of view when I sit to work
- Inbox zero by end of day
- Say 2 affirmations
- Make my bed in the morning
- Play guitar for 20 minutes
- Practic Spanish for 10 minutes
- More than 2 alcoholic drinks
- Smoke cigarettes
- No porn
- Eat sugar
- Text ex-girlfriend
- More than 2 coffees
- More than 10 minutes of social media
- Watch cable news
- More than 1 snack per day
- More than 15 minutes on dating app
- Get more rest
- Don’t order delivery so much
- Be more social
- Travel less
- Get tough
- Talk to my parents more
- Show affection to others
- Don’t binge Netflix as much
- Avoid thinking about her
- Stop doom scrolling
Get Atomically Small
The backbone of HABBIT is based off the best-selling book on habit formation, Atomic Habits, by James Clear. This book has become the bible for many of our friends in human optimization training and those seeking specific skills or improved lifestyle. Atomic Habits invests significant discussion not only in the methodology of habit change but also to establishing a container that is potentiated for change.
Psychology matters. How you identify your strengths and weaknesses will often dictate how you show up in the world. Believe whole-heartedly that you are capable and worthy of your aspired goals and habits.
Environment matters. Most habits are triggered by visual stimulus in our immediate environment. Those triggers produce unconscious physical, chemical and emotional responses. Organize your visual area to bring about the exact behaviors you desire.
Size matters. Larger milestones while audacious are counter-productive. The human mind has a natural aversion to making grandiose effort and will sabotage you with procrastination. Diminish your goals to atomic size and stack them until they grow to noble heights.
Be Part of a Pack
Loner wolves have a difficult time surviving in nature. So too, radical life changes invoked without the support of friends, family or social networks also tend to starve over time.
- EEnrollment. Find a way to enroll your social network in your change trajectory, or alternatively, enroll yourself in a group that’s already accomplishing your objectives. Goonies never say die.
- AAttention. Give attention to the emotions and resistance you have toward certain behaviors and sharing with others. Most "bad" habits are unconscious ploys to avoid or distract from emotional discomfort.
- TTracking. Tracking enables you to see streaks: in what you do, how you do it, with who you do it, where you do it, etc. Persistent streaks become patterns. Patterns become habits. Habits become your personality. It’s urgently important to track where these patterns begin.