Engineering Habits with James Clear's Four Laws of Behavior Change

Uncategorized Oct 22, 2020

How do you take a new habit from aspiration to automatic?   For many of us, this is one of the biggest questions we have as we seek to build up a set of positive daily practices that will carry us forward in our journey towards more joy and more impact across all the areas of our lives.  And most of us know that relying on sheer willpower is not a winning formula!

This post walks through a key framework from James Clear's research into the science of habit formation--the "four laws of behavior change" that he lays out in his outstanding book Atomic Habits.  

Clear explains that any habit, positive or negative has four components

1. Cue

2. Craving

3. Response

4. Reward

And he posits that the best way to make a positive behavior stick is to engineer each of these four components in a particular way.

  1. Cue: Make it obvious
  2. Craving: Make it attractive
  3. Response: Make it easy
  4. Reward: Make it satisfying

The reverse is true for habits that...

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Maximizing Your Personal Influence: Tools for Positive Persuasion and Inspiration

Uncategorized Oct 12, 2020

All of us have situations in which we would like to increase our ability to positively influence and inspire others.  This post reviews practical highlights from some recent research by behavioral science researcher Jonah Berger, as well as Bain and Company that you can apply to step up your skills to be persuasive and inspiring. 

And as you seek to build your skills for engaging positively with others, it is so important to remember being truly present with others also means opening yourself up to being influenced by them.   Sometimes the most important thing you can do as a force for good, whether out in the world or with your own friends and family is to step back from your certainty that you just need to get everyone else on board with your plan and genuinely tune into how you can allow others to influence your own perspective. 

Jonah Berger's 5 Keys to Persuasion

With this in mind, here's a summary of Jonah Berger's 5 ways to  remove barriers...

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Getting Visionary: Starting with Your What and Your Why

Uncategorized Oct 05, 2020

The first step on the Joyful Impact journey is about getting visionary. 

Many of us doing the work of social change feel as if we are committed to pursuing a vision for a better world.  But even it you feel like you already have a vision--it's worth asking yourself is my vision truly as clear and compelling as it could be? 

When it comes to getting visionary in pursuit of joyful impact, you need to start with clarity--not just about the difference you want to make in the world, but also about how you want to show up as your highest and best self across all the key areas of your life.   Here's why: we achieve joy and fulfillment in life by living in alignment with our highest selves. And so having clarity about who we are in our highest selves makes it much easier to become more fully conscious of what it takes to live in alignment. 

This post, and the worksheet that goes with it, guides you through the process of producing a 2-part personal...

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Switching From Fear to Joy as the Energy Source in Your Life

building impact Sep 22, 2020
What role does fear play in your life?  This may not be a question that you ask yourself very often.  But it’s especially worth asking if you’re someone with a calling to make the world a better place.  
Is fear an energy source for you in ways you may not even realize?
If you are using your fight or flight mechanism  to power your actions on a daily basis, you are using fear as an energy source.  And there’s no surprise in that, or shame.  It’s the most natural thing in the world.  It’s the way we are all wired thanks to tens of thousands of years of evolutionary biology.  But fear as an energy source has a lots of drawbacks.
This video and the accompanying worksheet walks you through some of the ways that fear can show up for you as a source of energy for taking action.  How many of these do you recognize in yourself?
  • Striving to win others approval
  • Seeking refuge in achievement,...
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Getting in the Green Zone for Collaborating Effectively with Others

Uncategorized Sep 10, 2020

A key element of achieving joyful impact is to work effectively with other people on ideas that are bigger than any one of us.  This means treating each other in a fundamentally better way, using consideration and collaboration rather than forms of contempt or objectification, such as coercion, manipulation or even violence.  Getting in the "green zone" of effective collaboration with others requires us to draw on the the tools of deep listening, collaborative problem solving, partnership brokering and transformative personal influence.

This post shares a framework for understanding the dynamics of interpersonal relationships, and identifies a set of questions to ask yourself that will help you land in the "green zone" for maximizing your collaboration and positive influence with others, even in challenging circumstances:

  • Before trying to enlist others in my plan, have I asked if the greatest impact would come from committing to follow someone else’s vision instead?...
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Masterminds for Joyful Impact: Tips and Tricks for Getting the Most from A Mastermind Group

Uncategorized Sep 01, 2020

A mastermind is a group of peers that meets regularly, typically once a month for 2-4 hours.   They provide a sounding board where you can share the best 5% and the worst 5% of your life and your challenges in a totally confidential setting.  This is one of the rarest, and most powerful personal growth accelerants there is.    In YPO and EO (the Entrepreneurs Organization), monthly mastermind groups are called "forums" and they are the centerpiece of that experience, covering all aspects of personal and professional life.

Mastermind groups expose you to all kinds of learning opportunities when it comes to assembling the knowledge, skills and mindsets that you need to accelerate your journey to joyful impact.   Your peers in a mastermind group are ready and willing to offer something far more valuable than their advice—they are giving you the benefit of their real life experience dealing with similar challenges...

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