The road to massive change can begin with one keystone habit

There are people, not all, but some, that want to make massive changes in their life. Some don’t. Some want the world to just accept them as they are and maybe even give them a participation medal.

But some (like you and me), want to get better. We want to get much better. And it seems overwhelming. To tell you the truth, that’s one of the biggest reasons so many have opted to settle for themselves the way they are now.

Massive change is hard. It is. I know. I’ve tried.

And I’ve failed.

But that’s not the end for me. I’m going to keep trying. And keep on looking for ways to get better at getting better.

Here’s one of the ways I’ve discovered to succeed at making massive change.

Start with one keystone habit.

One thing that I can win at and get some momentum. One thing to build on and add to the progress of other changes.

I got a notification today that my computer’s Apple software had some updates available. So I said yeah, go ahead and update. There were two things, iTunes and iCloud that needed to update. I clicked update and off it went.

I went back to what I was doing on the computer. Then I noticed that there were three lines in the updates area. I looked closer and saw that the second and third items were iTunes and iCloud. The first was “files shared by these updates”.

So since both features needed some of the same things, the update script just went ahead and installed the common files first and then worked on the two updates with a foundation to start with. They both get to update faster than if they were worked on separately.

That’s the way we should update ourselves.

Update some common things first.

So what are some common things?

I don’t know. It’s different for different people.

But here are some examples that I’m going to try.

I want to learn to play the guitar and the piano. So learning to read music may be a good first step.

I want to increase my fitness and I want to read more. Easy. Listen to audio books while I run. But I’m not running now… OK. What about if I work on a habit of getting up 1/2 earlier every day. Boom. I use that time to run and listen to a book.

Getting up earlier is the habit that makes the fitness and the more books actually happen.

So it’s not the combining of habits (running and reading) that’s the big idea here. It’s the getting up early to get those two things done. That’s the common thing.

James Clear says:

“when you make a change to one behavior it will activate a chain reaction and cause a shift in related behaviors as well.”

So what do you do now? How do you start using this?

Here’s what I suggest. Make a list of the things you want to change. Just a big list to begin with.

Then start to group them together. Look for things that go together. Look for concepts that tie two or three together.

Then start to see core habits that each group shares. Little things that would make each thing in the habit group closer to getting done.

What one thing will be the start of many other things?

Do that thing.

One awesome phenomenon about habits or success or whatever is that it acts and grows exponentially. If you can just start… If you can start with something that starts a few things at the same time…

You’ll be amazed at how fast it builds.

And that feels good.

So get started. Make a list. Group some things together. Start some core habits.

And watch the massive change begin.

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