How Tiny Habits Cause Big Results #SANE

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Real-Life Insights and Takaways

  • The concept of tiny habits comes from Stanford professor, Dr. B.J. Fogg, who teaches people how to create small habits that will help them to achieve long-term happiness.
  • The difference between short-term, temporary, unhealthy weight loss and long-term health and happiness, is habits, because once you have healthy habits you will experience success.
  • Once you have established a healthy habit you don’t have to think about making the choice each day because it is just what you do.
  • The absence of habit is at the core of self-sabotage, because when we look for quick, temporal solutions in any area of life will cause what we are trying to avoid.
  • Self-sabotage can hide in plain site.
  • When it comes to health, sometimes we are focusing on the newest technique or the latest trend rather than just doing what we know works.
  • SANE can help us prevent self-sabotage because it encourages us to do simple things consistently resulting in long-term health.
  • Three Steps to Create a Tiny Habit:
    1. Identify an anchor for your habit. Find something that you are already doing and attach the habit to a habit or ritual you already do.
    2. Then, reduce the habit itself into something that’s ridiculously simple. This can be something as simple as taking spinach out of the fridge in preparation for making a smoothie.
    3. Have some sort of a celebration that’s going to reward you emotionally. This doesn’t need to involve food or money. You can shout, “whoohoo” or tell yourself you are awesome.
  • Sometimes we theorize about the perfect or optimal choices we should be making and then we don’t do anything.
  • Experiment with a habit recipe and see what happens. Then make adjustments as necessary until the habit sticks.
  • We all know vegetables are good for us, so we really don’t need to spend our time researching more about them or how to eat. We just need to consistently eat more vegetables.
  • A trick to eating more vegetables can be something as simple as creating a habit of putting them on the kitchen counter at a time when you know you or your family will be hungry.
  • Link the whole habit recipe together so you can find what works for you.
  • As soon as you your feet hit the floor try to tell yourself, “It’s going to be a great day.”
  • Remember to take deep breaths, drink a lot of water, and focus on having positive thoughts.

—NEXT ACTION—
Identify a habit that would be most beneficial to you right now and an anchor you could associate with that habit.

SANE Soundbites

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  • 2:02 – 2:22, “The difference between short-term temporary unhealthy weight loss and long-term health and happiness, at the end of the day, is habits because once you have healthy habits, you win.  Done because you don’t have to think about it; it’s not something you’re like, “Oh, can I cheat on this?” because it’s a habit.  It’s just what you do.  Establishing those habits is key.”
  • 2:30 – 3:02, “The absence of habits is really at the core of self sabotage because when we don’t give ourselves permission to make something an ingrained portion of our lifestyle and we look for quick temporary fixes, this is inevitably going to lead to self sabotage.  Our pursuit of a temporary quick-fix in any area of life will cause the very thing we’re trying to avoid.  That’s why having real long-term habits are so critical.”
  • 5:14 – 5:36, “Having habits where you can consistently do simple things over time and have patience really helps to avoid things which most of us wouldn’t consider to be sabotaging us but when we look back at all the things we’ve tried and all the times we’ve yo-yo’d, it’s that pursuit of that shiny object or the next guru that is secretly sabotaging us.”
  • 7:00 – 7:29, “Step one is to identify an anchor for your habit.  It’s something that you just always do.  For example, I walk in the kitchen every morning while my kids are getting ready for school.  It’s just kind of a normal thing that usually happens around six-thirty in the morning.  It can also be something like when you get out of bed, your feet hit the floor or someone else will say it’s something like, “I start the dishwasher every night.”  Something that you’re already doing.  You find some anchor.”
  • 8:14 – 8:53, “If I say, “All right, every morning when I walk in the kitchen, I’m going to have a tiny habit and it’s got to be ridiculously simple.  My tiny habit is I’m just going to get the bag of spinach out of the freezer,” or the fridge, wherever it happens to be at that time.  Just getting it out and putting it on the counter—that’s the habit.  It’s not making the whole smoothie.  That’s bonus if I want to do that but I get credit for just taking it out of the refrigerator or freezer. Then once I do that, there has to be step three, which is the celebration.  Now, this is where it gets fun.  You have to have some sort of a celebration that’s going to reward you emotionally.”
  • 9:34 – 10:12, “Doing anything is better about theorizing about everything, which I think we so often do—theorizing about the perfect, about the optimal; but it’s like, “Is the spinach next to the blender?”  Period.  Let’s break it down a little bit more.  Having something that you know you can do that’s not intimidating which also causes then other psychological triggers of like, “Well, since the spinach is already out, I might as well make a smoothie now.”
  • 11:42 – 12:28, “I think what it comes down to is finding what works for you, right?  I love that that’s what we talk about in SANE living, is that you want to try things.  That’s actually what Dr. Fogg emphasizes in his TED talk.  He just said, “Really, you want to pick a habit, figure out a habit recipe, and then see what happens.”  One of the things that he mentioned, he said, “Be flexible, adjust, adapt, and find habits that are a good fit.”  Then he said this.  “Plant a seed in the right spot and it will grow and blossom on its own.” I think that’s a really powerful thing to consider because that’s exactly what happened with me when I went SANE.”
  • 13:44 – 14:01, “The uniquely empowering thing about a tiny habit—is it hits on two critical requirements of long-term success and happiness.  You focus on something small to begin with; you don’t try to boil the ocean and you actually do something in the real world.”
  • 14:35 – 14:53, “So we all know vegetables are good for us.  Done.  Period.  The more vegetables you eat, the healthier you will be.  No need to read anything else about vegetables.  No need to learn anything more about vegetables.  Anything you could do to just eat in the real world more vegetables consistently is a good thing.”
  • 16:23 – 16:30, “Putting the vegetables on the counter.  Once they’re out, it’s not that hard.  I think that’s something that’s really doable—just to get it out.”
  • 17:25 – 17:56, “You already have to unload the groceries so could you have one tiny habit there, which is, I’m not going to put my vegetables in the bottom section of my refrigerator, which is hidden and that no one can ever see; I’m just going to make a tiny habit of, I’m going to put something else in there and put my vegetables right up front.  Just those little optimizations.  Or like, when I get out stuff to cook for dinner, every time I pull food out of the fridge, I’m going to pull some vegetables out and chop them up.”
  • 18:39 – 19:15, “You open the fridge—I mean, because what’s a typical habit?  Open the fridge, look for the most sugary, fattening, tasty thing you can possibly find that will satisfy your craving—that could be your habit.  Instead, open the fridge, grab a whole cucumber or grab a whole carrot or grab something.  That’s the first thing.  And then you celebrate.  Having that celebration is really important because you want to be rewarding yourself and you want to have these positive emotions because that’s what I’ve been so interested in from this research from Dr. Fogg.  It’s this celebration. It’s linking the whole recipe together.  That’s what gets you to have success and that’s what keeps you moving.”
  • 22:02 – 22:44, “Another example of a small habit that I know some people have had success with is, a lot of people get their clothes ready for the next day prior to going to bed; as part of that tiny habit, some people would also lay out their fitness clothes or they would also just add to the existing routine of getting ready for the next day—getting my standard stuff ready. I’m just going to tack on something else to that routine of prepping for the next day, maybe put the blender out, put it in a conspicuous space; but just adding something simple on to a pre-existing routine.”
  • 23:26 – 24:01, “It’s not just about eating vegetables.  If you can have a tiny habit to sleep a little bit better, if you can have a tiny habit that strengthens the relationships in your life, if you can have a tiny habit that helps you to be a little bit more physically active—all of these things compound together. If you’re just like, “Well, there is no tiny habit around food that I can think of,” maybe there is a tiny habit around hugging your partner or your kid at sometime. Anything.  Let’s think about it in the broadest sense possible because I think that’s really going to help you move forward in your SANEity and your sanity as well.”

How Tiny Habits Cause Big Results

Jonathan: Hey, what’s up, everyone? Jonathan Bailor and April Perry back at you with another SANE Show. What’s going on, April? How are you doing today?

April: I’m doing so well. At the end of our last show we recorded together, I got this idea to talk about these tiny habits for going SANE. So today, I was so excited to be able to jump back in and be able to discuss this because I think this is going to be a fantastic episode we’ll want to listen to again and again.

Jonathan: Tiny habits; microscopic habits.

April: Yes.

Jonathan: What do you mean by tiny habits?

April: Okay, so this is from the research of Dr. BJ Fogg who I’ve been hearing about and following a little bit off and on for the past several years. Just recently, I’ve been diving deeper into his stuff because it’s amazing. He’s a behavior scientist and he’s a professor at Stanford. You may know him from his TED talk but he talks about how we can be happier on a day-to-day basis and he talks about these little habits that we can create. We’re going to talk a little bit about what a tiny habit recipe is. Then we’re going to talk a little bit about how we can apply that to SANE.

Now, I’m going to actually just share a quote that he shared in his TED talk when he was working with one of his students. He had received an email that a student had had huge success in creating a tiny habit. His student said this, “Finding the right tiny behavior helps you defeat giant-sized self sabotage.”

Maybe we could start there for a second. Jonathan, what have you seen as you’ve worked with thousands of people over the globe about how sometimes we can sabotage ourselves when it comes to going SANE?

Jonathan: The over-arching concept of habits and self sabotage are huge when it comes to SANEity. First and foremost, with habits—not going too deep into it because we can spend hours on habits alone—but the difference between short-term temporary unhealthy weight loss and long-term health and happiness, at the end of the day, is habits because once you have healthy habits, you win. Done because you don’t have to think about it; it’s not something you’re like, “Oh, can I cheat on this?” because it’s a habit. It’s just what you do. Establishing those habits is key and that’s why I’m so excited about this episode.

Self sabotage often comes into place. The absence of habits, as I’m sure we’ll talk about, is really at the core of self sabotage because when we don’t give ourselves permission to make something an ingrained portion of our lifestyle and we look for quick temporal fixes, this is inevitably going to lead to self sabotage. Our pursuit of a temporary quick fix in any area of life will cause the very thing we’re trying to avoid. That’s why having real long-term habits are so critical.

April: I’m so glad that you started talking a little bit more about how self sabotage becomes really normal. Actually I had a chance to talk with a friend recently who has been sabotaging herself physically for quite a while. She’s been going through a lot of stress, particularly in her marriage, and because that has been so overwhelming to her mentally, she’s eating foods that she knows are bad for her. I mean, just kind of deliberately clogging her system and filling herself and she’s not putting the time and energy into preparing healthy foods or into going out and exercising. As she’s doing it, she knows it’s bad for her but it’s like, inside your head, you just have a hard time even comprehending how you can get out of that.

I hope that what we’re talking about today can just be one kind of shift, a little pivot, moving in a better direction because I think you and I, whether it’s whatever has been our lives—we know how it feels to have anxiety and stress and pressure.

Jonathan: Self sabotage, I think, often times can hide in plain sight. What I mean by that is, we’ve all heard of or seen people or experienced ourselves, these overt behaviors which are just clearly like, “Why do I do this? Why do I do this?” But then there can be these hidden forms of self sabotage which, for instance, in the “weight loss arena”, I think one of the most common forms of hidden self sabotage is focusing on techniques too much and focusing on the newest shiniest thing where we think we’re doing something good.

We’re not intending to sabotage ourselves but the act of saying, “Oh, it’s this new trick,” that will always—there’s no new trick. In fact, everything we talk about in SANEity, when you think in SANEity, not insanity, in SANEity, is the most common sense basic stuff that we just don’t do. Having habits where you can consistently do simple things over time and have patience really helps to avoid things which most of us wouldn’t consider to be sabotaging us but when we look back at all the things we’ve tried and all the times we’ve yo-yo’d, it’s that pursuit of that shiny object or the next guru that is secretly sabotaging us.

April: I’m so glad you brought that up. That’s something that I’ve been obviously talking with Alia a lot, my sixteen-year-old daughter who’s been SANE for a couple of years, that she sees is happening all the time with her friends at school—the latest diet, the latest thing to be able to lose that weight fast. I love that she and all my children know that there are certain principles of health. So as we talk about these tiny habits and building them, let’s keep that in mind. Let’s keep in mind what are just the things that we know will help us be healthy and then let’s build habits around that.

Now, I had the chance—while I haven’t actually met Dr. Fogg in person, I did get a chance to interview his sister who has been working on Tiny Habits For Mothers and I do a lot with moms at Power of Moms and at LearnDoBecome. I had a chance to learn from her about this recipe for creating a tiny habit.

I’m just going to walk through the recipe and then let’s practice a little bit and talk about some of the SANE categories where we can create these habits. Then, Jonathan, I’ll be relying on you a lot for this because you’re watching people. You see it. I think that you have a unique view of looking at your community and seeing what are successful people doing that are helping them to be SANE.

All right, ready for our three steps to make a tiny habit?

Jonathan: Three steps and it’s tiny. It’s a habit. I’m ready.

April: Okay. Step one is to identify an anchor for your habit. It’s something that you just always do. For example, I walk in the kitchen every morning while my kids are getting ready for school. It’s just kind of a normal thing that usually happens around six-thirty in the morning. It can also be something like when you get out of bed, your feet hit the floor or someone else will say it’s something like, “I start the dishwasher every night.” Something that you’re already doing. You find some anchor.

Then, you reduce the habit itself—now we’re in step two—into something that’s ridiculously simple. You’re not going to say, “I’m going to have a habit of eating ten servings of vegetables a day” because while that can become a habit, that’s not a tiny habit. That’s a whole day-long thing and you’ve got to learn how to eat that many vegetables.

One of mine I’ll share, for example, was, I wanted to make my spinach smoothies every morning. I know you talk about batch cooking but that just hasn’t worked for me because our fridge is tiny and our family is huge and so I just don’t have room to store a whole bunch of smoothies but I’m already in the kitchen every morning talking with my kids. It actually works fine for me to make a day’s worth of smoothies or maybe two days’ worth in the morning.

If I say, “All right, every morning when I walk in the kitchen, I’m going to have a tiny habit and it’s got to be ridiculously simple. My tiny habit is I’m just going to get the bag of spinach out of the freezer,” or the fridge, wherever it happens to be at that time. Just getting it out and putting it on the counter—that’s the habit. It’s not making the whole smoothie. That’s bonus if I want to do that but I get credit for just taking it out of the refrigerator or freezer.

Then once I do that, there has to be step three, which is the celebration. Now, this is where it gets fun. You have to have some sort of a celebration that’s going to reward you emotionally—not using sugar or not like, “Then I get to go to the store and buy a new outfit.” It’s not money. It’s not sugar. It’s something that’s going to celebrate. Jonathan, I shared a link with you to a PDF that Dr. Fogg’s sister sent to me, which is just fun things like saying, “Woohoo” or you just think, “That is awesome” or you give yourself a round of applause or just something. She has like a hundred different ways you can celebrate. That’s the essential idea.

Those three steps—and we can give a few more examples as we go through this—but what are your thoughts initially, Jonathan?

Jonathan: I think that is a critical and empowering distinction for people, April, because doing anything is better about theorizing about everything, which I think we so often do—theorizing about the perfect, about the optimal; but it’s like, “Is the spinach next to the blender?” Period. Let’s break it down a little bit more. Having something that you know you can do that’s not intimidating which also causes then other psychological triggers of like, “Well, since the spinach is already out, I might as well make a smoothie now.”

April: It’s true. You know, it’s so funny. I actually did this. I went through it because I was realizing if I didn’t have the spinach smoothies made in the morning, I just won’t make them throughout the day. Eric and I get busy working. The kids are off at school. I’m like not in the kitchen. I’m not going to do it. But in the morning, I’m seriously in the kitchen for a good forty-five minutes just hanging out with my kids and my family and it’s a really natural time for me to make it so I thought, “Okay, this is just a habit I want to create.”

My reward was, I did this little dance. I didn’t tell my kids initially when I was doing it but I had this little dance I was going to do whenever I got the spinach out. So the first morning I did it, I walk in the kitchen, I’m like, “Oh, that’s my anchor.” I got the spinach out of the freezer. I put it next to the blender and then I did my little dance. My boys were like, “Mom, what are you doing over there?” But it worked. I made the spinach smoothie. I mean, this was something that I could just do consistently—not a big deal; a really easy way to get going.

Jonathan: What would be your thoughts, April, in terms of these small rewards? Let’s say, an individual has a beverage they like to drink in the morning, whether it’s tea or coffee or anything that’s common for people to drink in the morning. Do you think it would be a reasonable reward if we were doing something in the morning to say, “I am going to wait to take my first sip of coffee.”? Like, something I already do which is kind of already a reward but I don’t have to do anything to earn the reward. Could we maybe just reorder things so that I’m going to take the spinach out and then after I take the spinach out, I’m going to celebrate by taking a sip of my tea or a sip of my coffee?

April: I think that that would work. I think what it comes down to is finding what works for you, right? I love that that’s what we talk about in SANE living, is that you want to try things. That’s actually what Dr. Fogg emphasizes in his TED talk. He just said, “Really, you want to pick a habit, figure out a habit recipe, and then see what happens.” One of the things that he mentioned, he said, “Be flexible, adjust, adapt, and find habits that are a good fit.” Then he said this. “Plant a seed in the right spot and it will grow and blossom on its own.”

I think that’s a really powerful thing to consider because that’s exactly what happened with me when I went SANE. I mean, the other seeds, symbolically, that I tried planting were Weight Watcher’s points or just counting calories or just eliminating certain kinds of food from my diet. I mean, I’ve read twenty different books on weight loss and tried all these different things and all of those were seeds that I couldn’t get to grow, no matter how hard I tried. With SANE, when I planted SANE, and just said, “Hey, here’s a formula. Here’s a strategy.” It just took off and I didn’t even have to try.

I mean, I think I showed you my SANE journal and I got this journal where I could record everything I ate. I had one day where I recorded. From then on, it was just easy. I think what we want to encourage each person to do who’s in the same community is to try it. Say, “What is a habit that I want?” We’ll talk about a few more ideas as far as going SANE but thinking, “What’s a habit I could implement? What could be that reward?” Sure, try it and see if it works for you because if that’s going to keep you going, knowing, “Oh, then I can have my drink” or “Then I can do this.” It’s great. That gets you results in an easy way. I would say, go for it.

Jonathan: The empowering thing for me—the uniquely empowering thing about a tiny habit—is it hits on two critical requirements of long-term success and happiness. The first is that, you focus on something small to begin with; you don’t try to boil the ocean. You actually do something in the real world. What I mean by that—I don’t mean it in a negative way but I think we’ve all had personal experiences and we know people who—

For example, they’ll buy a wonderful piano and they’ll read online about all the different pianos they could buy and they’ll buy sheet music and they’ll join Internet discussion groups about how to play the piano well and then they’ll hire a wonderful piano teacher and they’ll get a t-shirt that says, “I love playing the piano.” But the actual amount of time spent sitting on the bench and playing the piano is low or does not exist at all.

So we all know vegetables are good for us. Done. Period. The more vegetables you eat, the healthier you will be. No need to read anything else about vegetables. No need to learn anything more about vegetables. Anything you could do to just eat in the real world more vegetables consistently is a good thing.

April: So let’s talk a little bit about that. Let’s take that as a tiny habit. How could we move forward on more vegetables? Like, my spinach smoothie example is one. Another example is, my kids come home every day. We have two highschoolers now. Can you believe it? I’ve got two girls in high school and then one in middle school and one in elementary. Every afternoon, we gather in the kitchen together. When we all come in the kitchen, I want us to be snacking on vegetables. I want vegetables to be available because I found the minute vegetables are out of the fridge, chopped, ready, and on a platter on the kitchen island, they’re gone.

It’s not even hard to get my family to eat them because it’s there, they’re hungry, “Oh, fresh pepper. Oh, some cherry tomatoes, cauliflower. I have a little Greek yogurt with my Ranch. I have powder in it to make a little dip or some hummus. My family will just wipe the platter clean. Like, it’s not even an issue. But I’ve got to get the vegetables out. So that’s where the tiny habit can be something like, “Okay, the second that they walk in the door, I don’t know, twelve-fifteen servings of vegetables are on the counter. Just haul it out.

Part of it’s planning in advance, making sure I have that many vegetables on hand; but just the act of taking it out—now, I can chop and slice or they can help me chop and slice and we can work on that together. That’s not as much of an issue. Just putting it on the counter—like, have you noticed a little theme here? Putting the vegetables on the counter. Once they’re out, it’s not that hard. I think that’s something that’s really doable—just to get it out. Keep cauliflower, peppers—a lot of the foods that we would like to just be eating more of, they don’t really come user-friendly. You have to work a little bit.

Jonathan: Or if they do come user-friendly, they’re super expensive. I mean, I’ve seen these pre-packaged vegetables and they’re super expensive so I like going back to Dr. Fogg’s example of, Step one is identify something you already do and then we’re going to tack something on the end of it. For example, if you already grocery shop—chances are, you do—one tiny habit could be, I am already passing the produce section so I’m going to make the tiny habit of just saying, “I’m going to grab some cauliflower and put it in my cart. Can I do that?” Yes.

April: And then do the dance.

Jonathan: Then do a dance. Do a dance or take a picture and post it on social media. Whatever makes you happy. Then when you get home, you already have to unload the groceries so could you have one tiny habit there, which is, I’m not going to put my vegetables in the bottom section of my refrigerator, which is hidden and that no one can ever see; I’m just going to make a tiny habit of, I’m going to put something else in there and put my vegetables right up front. Just those little optimizations. Or like, when I get out stuff to cook for dinner, every time I pull food out of the fridge, I’m going to pull some vegetables out and chop them up.

April: Yes, exactly.

Jonathan: Where can we find those little insertion points? And then do dances after all of them.

April: I know. Well, it doesn’t have to be a dance. It can just be, like, “I’m awesome” or a mental high-five. I mean, it can be something that’s really calm for those of you who don’t want to dance in your kitchen. I don’t know why you don’t want to dance in your kitchen but if you’re one of those people—? But I like what you’re saying too. I will say, I’ve been talking a little bit in the past about how I eat cucumbers whole or I eat peppers like apples. I’ve gotten my boys eating cucumbers whole in the past month since you and I recorded our last podcast together and it has been so cute to see them open the fridge, pull out a whole cucumber, and eat the cucumber. Little habits like that.

I mean, just, you open the fridge—I mean, because what’s a typical habit? Open the fridge, look for the most sugary, fattening, tasty thing you can possibly find that will satisfy your craving—that could be your habit. Instead, open the fridge, grab a whole cucumber or grab a whole carrot or grab something. That’s the first thing. And then you celebrate. Having that celebration is really important because you want to be rewarding yourself and you want to have these positive emotions because that’s what I’ve been so interested in from this research from Dr. Fogg. It’s this celebration.

It’s linking the whole recipe together. That’s what gets you to have success and that’s what keeps you moving. It’s not this, “Let me tell myself how awful I am and shame myself into eat better vegetables or no one’s going to ever love you.” It’s nothing like that. It’s this celebration.

Jonathan: And that also allows us to bridge the gap in the—I’ve always been fascinated by how, for example, people will pay money to create a virtual farm in games like Farmville, for example, but in the real world, people would require to be paid money to actually create a real farm. Part of the reason that that happens is, in the virtual world, gratification is immediate, and in the real world, gratification can take—we know it’s good to eat vegetables but if that prevents you from getting diabetes in forty years, the gratification is hard to stack up against the Snickers bar which is its own little celebration. I love that idea of “How can I get some immediate gratification?” Get that little dopamine rush in my brain right away. I love that. It’s very powerful.

April: Now, this doesn’t have to just apply to food so I’ll just share a couple of other ideas to think about before we close up and give some next actions. I love the idea—actually, this is the featured habit that Dr. Fogg shared in his TED talk where he said, “As soon as your feet hit the floor in the morning, as soon as you get out of bed, you say, “It’s going to be a great day.” Then you have a little celebration. I love that. “It’s going to be a great day.”

He said, “Sometimes when I wake up in the morning and I think, “Oh, I’ve got a lot going on today or there are some things that are really hard I’m dealing with and I’m not sure,” I say, “It’s going to be a great day somehow.” Kind of give that grace there. I love that just idea of “Let’s make it a great day.” Let’s start the day like that. I’ve actually done that and found out it was extremely successful.

Then, just one more that I love was, every time you open your email, you take three deep breaths so you’re breathing more because I have a hard time—I always hold my breath when I’m doing email. I don’t know why. Eric will say, “Are you breathing over there?” and I have to remind myself. Breathing, drinking water, positive thoughts—I mean, this is what SANE’s about. It’s not just about your vegetables; it’s not just about eating super healthy food all the time. There’s a really whole healthy life balance and that’s why I love it so much.

Jonathan: April, that’s brilliant. I actually think you hit on a new life hack which is going to go viral on the Internet, which is how to cut down on time spent emailing. You’re only allowed to do email as long as you could hold your breath. That’ll help people to radically reduce the amount of time check your email while not breathing.

April: Only check super short emails from now on.

Jonathan: Exactly, exactly. April, I love those little habits and I think another example of a small habit that I know some people have had success with is, a lot of people get their clothes ready for the next day prior to going to bed; as part of that tiny habit, some people would also lay out their fitness clothes or they would also just add to the existing routine of getting ready for the next day—getting my standard stuff ready.

I’m just going to tack on something else to that routine of prepping for the next day, whether or not it’s setting out—well, I probably don’t want to set out the spinach overnight but maybe put the blender out, put it in a conspicuous space but just adding something simple on to a pre-existing routine. I really like that idea as well.

April: Okay, so next action I would recommend—identifying which habit would be most beneficial to you right now. What’s one habit that would really help you but that doesn’t feel overwhelming? Whether it’s spinach smoothies or whether it’s saying it’s going to be a great day—whatever it is—identify one. How about you could start—figure out what your anchor is. figure out what your celebration is, and then try it and give it a few days and see what starts happening. Any other ideas there, Jonathan?

Jonathan: I think that’s a fantastic one. I would also encourage you, as you’re thinking about these habits, to think about them, as April alluded to, in the broadest sense possible, because we know, for example, that, again, it’s not just about eating vegetables. If you can have a tiny habit to sleep a little bit better, if you can have a tiny habit that strengthens the relationships in your life, if you can have a tiny habit that helps you to be a little bit more physically active—all of these things compound together.

If you’re just like, “Well, there is no tiny habit around food that I can think of,” maybe there is a tiny habit around hugging your partner or your kid at sometime. Anything. Let’s think about it in the broadest sense possible because I think that’s really going to help you move forward in your SANEity and your sanity as well.

April: Well, thank you, everybody, for being with us in today’s episode. We are so excited to see what your tiny habits are. Hope that they will be helpful to you in your journey going SANE. Have a wonderful day. Remember to stay SANE.

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