I wrote up a post this morning on micro-behaviours, triggers and rewards. Later on I was checking out Hacker News when I stumbled on this post by Alex Coleman, on how to get stuff done. Both posts refer to the same original work by Dr Fogg on micro-behaviours. In my post I emphasize using “triggers” to trigger the new habit, which may be an existing habit or environmental cue. In Alex's post, he puts a lot of emphasis on setting up a routine or schedule. The time itself becomes the trigger.
I watched this TED talk video on changing behaviour a few days ago, which really inspired me to take a more structured approach to developing a new positive habit. The key points of the video are that in order to affect long-term behavior change, you need to have a trigger – some habit that you already have, or an environmental queue that you can chain the new behavior from. You also need to make the new behavior as easy to do as possible. You want to associate a “micro-behavior” with your trigger – something that can easily become a habit, but that you can later expand to fully incorporate the new habit you are trying to achieve. Finally, you need to reward yourself in some way every time you do the micro-behavior.
The past few days I've been bringing in my new WIFI-only iPad and trying to use it tethered to my iPhone 5. It's been a frustrating experience so far. I've found that it works OK when the iPad is first tethered to the iPhone, but shortly thereafter the internet connection seems to drop out on the iPad, even though the iPhone is still reporting it to be connected OK.
I had heard a while ago that the ideal holiday was one in which you had a fairly bad start to it, but with a peak experience close to the end of the holiday. The rationale is that we tend to base our judgement of the holiday on the range of our trough-to-peak experiences. The larger the spread between the trough and the peak, with the peak occurring towards the end of the experience, the better we perceive the experience to be.
I’ve been reading the “Beyond Scarcity” series on FTAlphaville recently, and it’s made some very interesting points. The posts argue that the current economic environment is deflationary with regard to goods. I think that is true, and one of the reasons is because of technology. Firstly technology is constantly making everything more efficient and because of global competition this is both reducing the production costs and making goods cheaper. Secondly technology is causing structural unemployment, which means less people have money to spend and there is less money flowing around the economy. Other factors causing deflation are the tight monetary conditions, the aging population, and potentially the effects of quantitative easing.
So I was thinking about being older today, and I saw this Louis CK clip about how older people are smarter – “Older people are smarter, and if you get into an argument with someone who’s older, you should listen. It doesn’t mean they’re always right; but even if they’re wrong, their wrongness is rooted in more experience.”
I’ve been using time-boxing for quite a while, off and on. I have a task list every day and start timing chunks of time in which to work on the tasks. I’m not like Helen, who finds it easy to work at home. I find it far easier to work at a client’s office. This has changed recently though, thanks to my new work-flow.
There is an interesting clip over on YouTube, that shows what having Google Glass (or something similar) might someday be like.
A couple of years ago, when I was thinking a bit about frugality (as in; “Hey, that’s a characteristic I should have more of), I came up with the idea of a “Zero-Six Week”. This is a week where I am only allowed to spend money on one of the days (typically a Sunday). The aim is to buy enough necessities on the Sunday to see me through the week, and not spend any money at all the rest of the week. That means walking everywhere, making all the meals for the week, etc.
Lifehacker has a infographic giving research-based workout exercises that will work your whole body. The best bit is that you apparently can do the whole thing is 7 minutes (30 seconds per exercise, with 10 seconds rest between them).