Book Summary: Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg

Book Cover for Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg

This summary of Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg describes how behaviour change works and how to implement the Tiny Habits method in your life. The book is basically about making habits easier (by making them “tiny”), finding a place for them in your life (an anchor) and celebrating your successes. Tiny Habits might just help you make those New Year’s resolutions stick!

Buy Tiny Habits at: Amazon | Kobo (affiliate links)

Key Takeaways from Tiny Habits

This summary of Tiny Habits is divided into three parts. The first part of the summary describes the theory behind how behaviour and behaviour change works:

  • Behaviour is a function of Motivation and Ability, combined with a Prompt. This is the Fogg Behaviour Model, which is expressed as:


  • Motivation is fickle and unreliable.
  • Luckily, Motivation and Ability compensate for each other. When something is easy to do (high ability), you need less motivation to do it. So successful behaviour design usually relies on increasing ability, such as by making the habit “tiny”, or changing your environment.
  • Prompts are what trigger our behaviours. There are three types of prompts: person, action, and context. Fogg favours action prompts or “anchors”, where you do the new behaviour after an action you already do consistently.
  • Immediate rewards are important as they make behaviours into habits. People succeed when they feel good. Celebration is one way to provide an instant, easy reward.

The second part of the summary is about the Tiny Habits method itself and how to implement it. Here there are broadly three stages:

  • First, work out which behaviours you will make into habits. This involves clarifying your aspiration, brainstorming behaviours, and then mapping those behaviours onto your aspiration. This exercise helps you find the best behaviours to make into habits.
  • Second, make those behaviours into habits with the ABC formula: find a good anchor, make the behaviour easier, and practise celebrations.
  • Lastly, rehearse your habits, and let them naturally multiply and grow. If you need to troubleshoot, look at the prompt, ability, or celebration first. Look at motivation last.

The last part of the summary covers the bonus stuff, like untangling bad habits and changing with others. I also outline a few examples of habits and links to further resources. Although these are still important, they don’t form the “core” of the book.

Detailed Summary of Tiny Habits

As is often the case with my summaries, the structure of this summary does not match the structure of the book. In the book, Fogg combines the theory with the practical. He advocates a particular method (the Tiny Habits method) and explains the theory behind it as he goes.

In this summary, I have separated out the theory (Part One) from the practical (Parts Two and Three), because I don’t plan to follow the Tiny Habits method exactly as described in the book. I plan explain this in a later post on how I’ve put Tiny Habits into practice (or failed to do so).

Part One: Behaviour and Behavioural Change Generally

Don’t blame yourself if your previous attempts at changing your behaviour have failed – you’ve just been using the wrong system.

People often assume that having the right information changes behaviour. It doesn’t. Fogg calls this the “Information-Action Fallacy”. [This seems similar to what David McRaney calls the information deficit hypothesis. That hypothesis (which turns out to be wrong) states that people will change their minds once they get the information they were missing.]

The Fogg Behaviour Model

Behaviour is a function of motivation and ability, combined with a prompt. This is the Fogg Behaviour Model:


Under the Model, motivation is your desire to do the behaviour while your ability is your capacity to do it. A prompt is the cue that triggers the behaviour.

A graph illustrating the Model is available on the official website. When all three elements converge at a point above the “Action Line”, the behaviour happens. The Model explains behaviour in general, so it can also be used to get rid of bad habits and to design apps for other people. [Fogg previously worked on “persuasive technology”.]

Motivation is fickle and overrated

People place a lot of emphasis on motivation and often believe it is the key driver of behaviour. In reality, it is just one of three elements, and the most fickle one:

  • Motivation comes from various sources. Often we don’t really understand our motivations and where they come from.
  • Motivations may push in opposite directions, which can be distressing. You want to be healthier but you also want to eat the cupcake.
  • Motivation also fluctuates. Sometimes we get a big spike of motivation that propels us to do hard things. But high levels of motivation cannot be sustained. A common mistake is to overestimate future motivation. Don’t blame yourself – it’s just how motivation works.
    We therefore shouldn’t rely on our motivations to drive sustained behavioural change.

Ability is easier to control

The good news is that motivation and ability compensate for each other. To ensure a behaviour happens, we can increase ability by making it “tiny” and easy, so we don’t have to rely on willpower or motivation.

Making a habit “tiny” makes it easier to start right now without worrying about the time or effort involved. It’s also safe and sustainable – if you keep expectations low, you’re less likely to fail and fall into a shame spiral.

A habit that starts out tiny can gain momentum and become transformative. Habits get easier with practice as your ability increases. You can then slowly increase the difficulty of the habit without it falling below the “Action Line”. But be careful not to raise your expectations prematurely. Some days you’ll just have the motivation to do the tiny version, and that should still count as success.

Prompts trigger behaviours

There are three types of prompts:

  • Person. Something within us triggers a behaviour. For example, hunger pangs prompt us to eat.
  • Context. Something in our environment triggers a behaviour. For example, a phone notification, sticky note, or seeing the milk carton empty can prompt us to buy milk.
  • Action. An action prompt is when something you do triggers another behaviour. For example, brushing your teeth may prompt you to floss, or watering the plants may prompt you to fill your drink bottle. Basically, it’s adding another habit to your routine. Fogg also uses the term “anchor” to refer to action prompts.
Which prompts to use?

Fogg recommends using action prompts to design behaviour. Person prompts are too unreliable. Context prompts might occur at inconvenient times when you have no ability to do the behaviour. If a reminder to water the plants goes off when you’re out, you can’t do anything about it. Moreover, if you have too many notifications, you may learn to tune them out and they’ll stop working.

An action prompt fits a habit into your existing routines. You can also chain several habits together.

Rewards help build habits

Rewards wire new habits into our brains. Positive emotions trigger the release of a neurotransmitter called dopamine that controls the brain’s reward centre. Anything that gives you instant pleasure, or instant relief from discomfort, can reinforce a behaviour and increase its odds of reoccurring. With reinforcement, a behaviour becomes more and more automatic.

The word “reward” has a special meaning in behaviour science. Laypeople often mistakenly mix up the terms “reward” and “incentive” (e.g. I rewarded myself for sticking to the diet with a massage). In behaviour science, a reward must be immediate – i.e. milliseconds. Incentives occur too far in the future for your brain to associate the dopamine hit with your desired behaviour.

One free and fast way to create a reward is by celebrating. Celebration also teaches us to be nice to ourselves. Admittedly, it can feel a bit hokey, so people often feel tempted to ignore this part. But Fogg emphasises that it is essential to the Tiny Habits method, because people succeed by feeling good. In his work, Fogg found that the people who embraced celebrations were the most successful at establishing habits. He even goes so far as to say it’s the most important takeaway from his book:

Celebration will one day be ranked alongside mindfulness and gratitude as daily practices that contribute most to our overall happiness and well-being. If you learn just one thing from my entire book, I hope it’s this: Celebrate your tiny successes.
– BJ Fogg in Tiny Habits

Celebration is optional once you’ve established a habit. Some people keep celebrating because it feels good, which is fine. You should also celebrate if you’re picking up your habit again after a break (e.g. if you’ve been on vacation), or if you’re increasing stepping up the habit in some way.

Part Two: How to Implement Tiny Habits

Step One: Decide on which behaviours to make into habits

Instead of randomly guessing which behaviours you should implement, Fogg suggests a more structured way to work out which behaviours will best help you achieve your aspirations. Broadly, this involves:

  • First, clarifying your aspiration; and
  • Mapping behaviours onto your aspiration.
Clarify your aspiration

Fogg distinguishes between three things:

  • Aspirations. These are enduring, abstract desires – e.g. I want to be a healthy body weight.
  • Outcomes. These are more measurable – e.g. I want to lose 10 pounds.
  • Behaviours. These are things you can do right now. I can’t lose 10 pounds right now, but I can eat a carrot.
    Aspirations can be vague but behaviours should be concrete. There are many behaviours that will help you achieve your aspiration.

Clarifying your aspiration helps you to design efficiently for it. For example, maybe you thought you wanted to be more mindful, but actually you just want less stress. Behaviours that help you de-stress may not exactly match those that increase mindfulness.

Map behaviours onto your aspiration

Brainstorm specific behaviours that will help move you towards your aspiration. Come up with as many as you can without censoring yourself. Make sure to be very specific.

Next, match behaviours to your aspiration. Consider both impact and feasibility of each behaviour. Feasibility takes into account both motivation and ability. Do you feel excited or a sense of dread when you think about doing the behaviour? Is the behaviour something you can do consistently in your real life? Fogg suggests using a Focus Map to find your “Golden Behaviours” – behaviours that are high on both impact and feasibility.

This exercise identifies behaviours you already want to do, setting you up for success.

Step Two: Turn your behaviours into habits with the ABC formula

The Tiny Habits “recipe” takes the following “ABC” structure:


Anchor: find a suitable one

A good anchor should match your desired new habit in terms of:

  • Physical location. If your new habit occurs in the kitchen, find an existing routine in the kitchen.
  • Frequency. If you want to do your new habit 4 times a day, look for routines that occur 4 times a day.
  • Theme/purpose. For example, if you drink coffee to be productive, then productivity-related habits may be a natural fit for that anchor, but not relaxation-related habits. This one would be ideal, but is not as important.

Examine your life to find routines to use as anchors. While some people’s lives can be unpredictable, everyone has some routines they can use as anchors, even if it’s something like using the toilet .The book lists some common morning, midday, and evening routines. Mornings are a good place to start as they tend to be predictable, while routines can go awry later in the day as life happens.

Precise anchor moments tend to work better than vague ones. “After I finish dinner …” is not as precise as “after I put my dinner dish in the dishwasher …”. “After I take a shower …” may be more precisely put as “After I hang up my bath towel …” [Some of Fogg’s examples of successful habits have vague anchors, such as “After I feel insulted, I will think of something nice to do for myself”. So I guess a precise anchor can help, but is not essential.]

Behaviour: make it easier

In Step One, you identified some high-impact and feasible behaviours. Now, you make those behaviours easier, so that you can turn them into habits.

Think about what makes a behaviour difficult. Fogg suggests considering ways to address weak links in terms of these 5 factors: time, money, physical effort, mental effort and how it fits in your routine.

Some ways to make a behaviour easier include:
1. Increasing your skills. You could skill up by doing some research, taking a class or simply by practising the behaviour.
2. Getting tools and resources. For example, Fogg found flossing to be physically difficult, so he tried out 15 types of floss to find one that fit best between his teeth.
3. Making the behaviour tiny. Scale down your behaviour to be super-easy, to increase your chances of success. For example, instead of doing 20 minutes of meditation each day, just take 3 deep breaths. Instead of going for a run every day, just aim to put on your running shoes. Usually you’ll end up doing more than the bare minimum, but anything else is a bonus. That way, your habit can occur even on days when motivation is low.

Celebrations: find them and practise them

Make sure you celebrate immediately after your desired behaviour. People often find it hard to celebrate a behaviour that feels so “tiny”, like wiping the kitchen counter, because they don’t feel they’ve earned it. But performing a new habit exactly as you designed it is a big accomplishment worth celebrating.

You may have to experiment with different types of celebrations to find one that genuinely feels good for you. The book contains several exercises asking you to imagine what you would do in various “success” scenarios, such as landing your dream job or having your sports team win an exciting championship match. The Appendix also includes a list of 100 (!) suggestions, such as doing a fist pump, saying “I nailed it!”, or posing like Usain Bolt.

Some suggestions to help with celebrating:

  • Practise. Celebrating is a skill that you can improve with practice.
  • Focus on the larger benefits of habit. Wiping a countertop may be meaningful to you because it shows how you want to improve your relationship with your spouse. Focusing on that larger meaning may make your celebration feel more genuine.
  • Get a child to help. Children are great at celebrating. In contrast, adults tend to have lots of ways to tell themselves they did a bad job, but very few ways to recognise their own successes.
  • Do something physical. Physical movements, like smiling or raising your fists in the air, can generate positive feelings.
  • Think of a song or sound effect. Sing or hum part of an upbeat song you like, or imagine the sound of a trumpet fanfare or slot machine jackpot.

Step Three: Rehearse, troubleshoot and expand your habits

Change is a skill. There is skill in figuring out what your aspirations really are, knowing when to push yourself and when to back off, being patient with the process, etc. Like other skills, you’ll get better with practice.


Finally, rehearse your whole behaviour sequence: the anchor, new habit and then celebration. Do it 7-10 times in a row. It may feel silly, but it helps wire in the habit fast.


When troubleshooting a behaviour, check the anchor/prompt and ability first:

  • Can you make the prompt more precise?
  • Can you increase ability by changing your environment? For example, Fogg keeps a bunch of healthy, ready-to-eat food in appealing glass containers in his fridge, which makes it a lot easier to eat healthy. Or perhaps you could increase ability by making the habit tinier?
  • Would another celebration work better for you?
    Look at motivation last. More often than not, it’s not a motivation issue.

Experiment. It’s fine for your habits to shift a lot in the first few days or weeks. Think of them as “recipes” where you can tweak the ingredients and method if you’re not getting the results you want. This can give you more compassion and may help stop you blaming yourself or other people for undesired behaviour.

Expanding habits

Over time, some habits will naturally scale. They can do this in two ways:

  • Grow. Habits can grow bigger. You might start out taking three breaths and end up meditating for 30 minutes.
  • Multiply. Habits can lead to other habits. For example, the Maui Habit (see below) may lead to other positive habits like making the bed or thinking of something you’re grateful for.
    This scaling happens naturally, because success leads to more success. Your confidence grows, you get better at the habit, and your motivation increases. Surprisingly, it’s the frequency of success that creates momentum, rather than the size of each success.

Don’t pressure yourself into doing more than the tiniest version of your habit on days that you feel sick or particularly unmotivated. If you do go bigger than usual, celebrate more than usual.

Part Three: Bad Habits, Changing Others, and more

Untangling bad habits

The Tiny Habits method can also be used to curb bad habits. However, it cannot address serious addictions and substance abuse issues (you should see a specialist for those).

“Breaking” a bad habit implies that if you apply a lot of force at once, it will disappear. That’s wrong and sets unrealistic expectations. Instead, Fogg talks about “untangling” bad habits and uses the analogy of a rope full of knots. Yanking the rope just tightens the knots. To untangle them, you have to do it step by step, focusing on the easiest knot first.

Fogg sets out 3 phases for untangling bad habits:

  1. Creating new habits;
  2. Stopping bad habits; and
  3. Swapping a new habit for the old one (if needed).
Untangling bad habits is like untangling a giant knot - you have to work on one at a time
1. Creating new habits

Going straight for a bad habit you’ve unsuccessfully battled with for years will likely be too hard. Instead, first establish positive new habits in areas without emotional baggage. For example, if you’ve unsuccessfully tried to lose weight for years, work on habits in tidiness, productivity or something first.

This will make you more skilled at behaviour change and build your confidence to tackle bad habits. Positive new habits may also have the side effect of crowding out bad habits.

2. Stopping bad habits

Get specific. A vague general habit like “stop eating junk food” is actually a tangle of many habits. For example, it may involve eating a donut during morning tea, putting sugar in your coffee or using white bread for sandwiches. To tackle a general habit, list out all the specific behaviours that contribute to that habit and work on them one at a time. Again, focus on the easiest ones first to build feelings of success. You can later go back to the larger list of behaviours and work on another one.

The Behaviour Model also applies to bad habits. Again, look at prompt and ability before moving to motivation (remember: motivation is fickle):

  • Prompt. Can you remove or avoid it? If not, you can try ignoring it, but that’s harder as it relies on willpower. If you do manage it, make sure to celebrate when you succeed in doing so.
  • Ability. Can you make the habit harder? Recall Fogg’s 5 factors for making a behaviour more difficult: time, money, physical effort, mental effort, and routine. For example, make your social media password annoyingly complicated and don’t allow the system to save it, so you have to exert mental effort each time you want to access it.
  • Motivation. Two ways to adjust motivation are:
    • Reduce your motivation to do the unwanted habit. For example, eating healthy food before a party so that you feel less motivated to eat unhealthy food.
    • Add a demotivator. However, Fogg does not recommend this option because it just adds a conflicting motivation, increasing stress and tension (see below).
      If none of the above works, try lowering your expectations and scaling back your desired change.
3. Swapping a new habit for the old one

Pick a good behaviour (a Golden Behaviour) as your replacement habit. Make sure both motivation and ability for the replacement habit are higher than the old one. You should also try to “re-map” your prompt so that it triggers the new habit instead of the old one.
To do that, you may have to physically or mentally rehearse the new habit several times. Make sure to celebrate when you practise the new habit.

If your swap doesn’t work, your old habit is either easier to do or more motivating than your new habit. See if you can adjust motivation and ability for either the new or old habit (ideally both!) in the right direction.

If that still doesn’t work, try to find another new habit to swap in, or try the swap for a limited time. And if all else fails, practise building other new habits to grow your confidence and improve your behaviour change skills. Don’t blame yourself. You may just have to come back to this later.

Changing Others

Social dynamics are powerful drivers of behaviour. We shape the people around us through our behaviours, and they shape us. Group habits and norms can be even more entrenched than individual habits.

We are always changing together whether we design for it or not.
– BJ Fogg in Tiny Habits

Sometimes those around us are willing to work together to design changes. Other times, they may be resistant to changes and seek to undermine your efforts. In those cases, you may have to be more subtle.

When we ask others to do relatively “big” things like “clean your room”, “be tidier”, or “get out more”, they may feel ashamed and defensive because they don’t know where to start. One example I enjoyed showed how specific requests can be a lot more productive. A man had repeatedly tried to get his son to clean his coffee machine filter after using it. He started by asking his son to simply take out the filter and put it on the counter after using it. Since it was such a small and easy task, his son did it. After a few weeks, he upgraded to asking his son to rinse the filter before putting it back on the counter, which he did. Soon after, the son cleaned the filter and put it back without being asked.

The book sets out some advice on how you might work through the various behaviour design steps with others – both overtly as a “Ringleader”, or subtly as a “Ninja”. [I haven’t summarised this as there’s not much new or groundbreaking there, though you may find the suggestions and examples useful.]

Conflicting motivations

Incentives and commitment contracts are not part of the Tiny Habits approach. These methods focus on increasing motivation. However, we often have conflicting motivations regarding certain behaviours. For example, dancing at a party may involve conflicting motivations of hope and fear, which push in opposite directions.

While Fogg accepts that adding motivators or demotivators can sometimes work, it also adds stress and tension. They can make conflicting motivations push harder against each other and can lead to self-criticism and guilt if you fail. The Tiny Habits approach therefore aims to reduce or remove the demotivators (or motivator, for bad habits) to allow your natural motivation to do its job and create long-term change.

Examples of habits

If you don’t know where to start, Fogg suggests starting with 3 super easy habits and adding 3 more each month. There are many examples of tiny habits in the book. I’ve provided a few here to give a flavour of what they’re like. There are plenty more in the official Tiny Habits Toolkit.

  • Maui Habit. After you put your feet on the floor in the morning, say, “It’s going to be a great day”. Fogg suggests that everyone start practising the Maui Habit every morning, and try to feel optimistic and positive as you do so. If you feel crap that morning, you could adjust it to something like, “It’s going to be a great day – somehow”.
  • Flossing. After you brush your teeth, floss one tooth.
  • Push-ups. After you go to the toilet, do two push-ups.
  • Journaling. After I sit down with my coffee, I will open my journal.
  • Not snacking. After I finish dinner, I will brush my teeth to stop myself snacking in the evening.
  • Gratitude. After I turn on the shower, I will think of something to be grateful for. This is an example of a “meanwhile habit”, where you use small pockets of time when you have to wait for things. For example, .
  • Relax. After I hear the click of the A/C unit, I will relax my face and neck. Fogg calls this a “pearl habit”, where you use an irritant as a prompt for something good.

Further resources

The Appendices contain various flow charts to show how the various steps work together. It also provides links to further reading:

Other Interesting Points

  • Making behaviours tiny can also help beat procrastination. By lowering the bar and focusing on just a tiny “starter step”, you’ll at least do something. The momentum will then often carry you into doing more. For example, if you’ve been putting off calling the doctor, just tell yourself to write down the doctor’s phone number on a post-it. [I’ve been doing this for a few years and agree that it is surprisingly helpful it is.]
  • A common belief is that repetition over a long period creates habits. Fogg thinks that is a myth. In his research, he’s found that habits can form in just a few days, as long as there’s a strong positive emotion connected to it.
  • Google, Instagram, Amazon and Slack all started out with a single, focused product. Only once they got bigger did they add more products and features. Fogg thinks that’s the key to their success. (One of Instagram’s co-founders, Mike Krieger, was one of Fogg’s students.)

My Thoughts

Tiny Habits was a very short (322 pages, including exercises and lots of pictures) and easy read. Clearly Fogg has put effort into making his ideas as accessible as possible. I’m not a huge fan of the rather “twee” labels he uses (e.g. Swarm of Behaviours, Magic Wanding, Motivation Monkey, Golden Behaviours, etc). They may be memorable and effective, but there were a few too many for my liking. Personally, I find them a bit distracting, but that may just be me.

Apart from that, I found Tiny Habits to be a surprisingly enjoyable read. It was not much longer than it needed to be, structured logically, and full of practical, actionable suggestions. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting a lot out of this book. I thought it would just rehash advice I’d already heard, interspersed with inspirational stories about people who had successfully built good habits. (In other words, I was expecting it to be more like Atomic Habits, which I’ve recently also finished.) Instead, I learned some new ideas (e.g. rewards vs incentives), and Fogg actually contradicted some advice I’d heard previously, especially about motivation. For example, he doesn’t recommend using “Ulysses contracts”, which have never appealed to me.

Granted, Tiny Habits did have plenty of inspirational stories, but I didn’t mind them. The examples in the book gave me some ideas for habit recipes I could apply in my own life. (I also appreciated how Fogg provides a long list of such recipes in the Appendices and on his website.)

Fogg is the director of the Stanford Behavior Design Lab and the advice in the book is apparently backed up by the lab’s findings. His research is a little unconventional as it’s based on real people using different methods in real life, rather than in a controlled lab environment. Personally, I don’t mind. Fogg’s suggestions are compelling enough that I figure it’s worth a go, especially as there’s so little downside. And it’s not like traditional controlled studies are fail-proof either, as the replication crisis has showed.

Buy Tiny Habits at: Amazon | Kobo <– These are affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase. I’d be grateful if you considered supporting the site in this way! 🙂

Have you read this book or tried the Tiny Habits method? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

If you enjoyed this summary of Tiny Habits, you may also like:

13 thoughts on “Book Summary: Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg

  1. After I finish reading a book summary, I will leave a comment :).

    Another excellent book summary, which I enjoyed during this Lunar New Year holiday.

    This book reminded me of a similar book I read many years ago called The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg.

    I think breaking down desired actions into tiny steps is critical.

    I’ve found some productivity tools to be quite helpful. For example, I find ticking off a task on Todoist surprisingly satisfying.

    I also did a course recently on Project Management, where breaking down group tasks into individual tasks is key. I’ve started using project management principles for personal projects and I’ve found them to help with reducing stress. I feel less stressed if I take a few daily steps instead of finishing the entire thing.

    1. Thank you EC! I haven’t read The Power of Habit but I’ve recently finished Atomic Habits by James Clear and I think Clear leans quite heavily on Duhigg’s work so you’ll probably see a lot of overlap there.

      I totally agree with you about breaking things up into smaller steps, and that ticking tasks off Todoist is incredibly satisfying. Especially when it’s the last task of the day! It’s a bit different from the Tiny Habits method that Fogg suggests (since he’s not big on context prompts), but it works for me.

  2. Thanks this was really interesting.

    I’m about half way through Atomic Habits so I’d be keen to hear your thoughts on that. I think it’s got lots of good advice, although for whatever reason I find the structure where every chapter starts with an anecdote/study kind of grating after a while.

    1. I wasn’t a big fan of Atomic Habits. I know what you mean about the structure, but I didn’t mind that *too* much. It’s so common in non-fiction books, I guess I’m kinda used to it. Though I did find the chapter where he opens with a Guns, Germs and Steel reference to be laughably strained.

      I just felt like with Atomic Habits, I’d heard it all before elsewhere (not just in Tiny Habits). And overall it came off a bit too motivational-speechy for me, especially towards the end. I’m actually drafting a post comparing the two, which I’ll publish after my Atomic Habits summary.

  3. Clear and actionable advice, this is awesome!

    For me personally, the advice on the power of celebration is the most intriguing and the action I’ll be most mindful to apply. Usually, I’ve operated with the exact opposite mindset: it’s expected that I carry out X habit, and a failure to execute inspires self-criticism. I’ll probably feel silly at first celebrating seemingly banal accomplishments, but hey, I’ll give it a try

    1. Make sure to check out the Tiny Habits toolkit, which has some ideas for ways to celebrate.

      I personally liked the suggestion of singing “Hey now, you’re a rock star” (in my head), since we all sing to ourselves in our heads anyway and music’s a great way to lift your mood. Imagining celebratory trumpets also seems to do the trick for me 🙂

  4. Hi ToSummarise.

    Great summary above!

    Here are my suggestions to Tiny Habits newbies.

    1) If you have the book, go right to the appendix section because it is a gold mine. BJ did all the work for you so you don’t have to memorize the book. Just follow the appendix steps.

    The flow charts there visually explain the entire Tiny Habits method step-by-step so you can’t go wrong.

    They cover:

    – Making a new habit and also debugging it

    – Stopping a habit

    – Swapping a habit with a replacement habit

    The above are all part of the “Behavior Change Masterplan”

    Also there is a map for:

    – Making a behavior easier to do

    The charts cover all the basic situations you might be in while managing your habits.

    The book can be overwhelming to absorb.

    But the appendix section distills the entire book into exactly what you need to know and do.

    Take a look and you’ll see how systematic Tiny Habits is.

    Then follow the maps. Build new habits. Get them to stick.

    Take the free coaching for 1 week to make you actually do it.

  5. Tip 2) Don’t get bogged down with all of the details in the book.

    Just use the appendix and follow the flow charts.

    Then learn by doing.

    Go ahead and make your new Tiny Habits.

    Also take the free coaching immediately even before you read the book.

    Read the simple material they provide free via links.

    Get the free coach’s email answers to your questions.

    Spend 1 week and just do it.

    It only takes 5-10 minutes per day for 1 week.

    It’s all done in a very minimal way.

    Learn by doing rather than trying to absorb the entire book.

  6. Tip 3) Understand that some things are not explained in the Tiny Habits book that you need to know.

    For example, only certain behaviors can be made into habits.

    – It should be something very simple and repetitive and consistent you can do “on auto-pilot”

    – It should be something that doesn’t require complex thought or decision-making or agonizing about what you prefer at the moment

    – It should be something “good enough” so you just do it by default

  7. Tip 4) Habits really do need to be repeated to make them stick.

    The key thing is to:

    – Keep the habit as simple and easy and consistent as possible while it is forming

    – Keep the trigger and situation as consistent as possible too

    The more consistent all that is, the faster the brain converts the deliberate repetition into automatic programming in a different part of the brain.

    Then the brain can just do it on auto-pilot while you are thinking about other things or listening to music.

    Learning a new habit that sticks is like rehearsing a “fire-drill”. Then when the fire-alarm goes off, you just do the fire-drill as-learned.

    The more you design your new habit like a fire-drill, the more successful your new habit will stick.

  8. Tip 5) Tracking progress in a noticeable way can help a lot.

    That can be an easy first Tiny Habit too.

    Like this Tiny Habit recipe:

    “After I” _______, ”

    I will” track my progress, and

    I will celebrate that tracking!

    And the celebration should be “authentic pride” that you are making progress.

    Otherwise your mind will see it as a waste of time and effort.

    1. Wow, thanks for taking the time to send through these tips! (I deleted one that was a duplicate.) I will check out the free 1-week course. I had been ambivalent about it since I’ve already read the book and figured it would be a bit repetitive, but you’ve convinced me it’s worth a go

      1. You’re welcome!

        I hope you sign-up for the Atomic Habits 30 day free course too.

        It’s 11 very short lessons by email sent over 30 days.

        You will get the workbook the first day.

        In it you can see the entire overview.

        Then you can test drive both!

        See which is better for building your particular new habit!

        My guess is a hybrid approach combining ideas from both books might be best long-term.

        But maybe one is better overall for right now.

        Maybe one would be your preferred foundation. And you might build on it with concepts added from the other.

        I’m curious what you discover! I hope you let us know! Good luck!

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