Top 10 Books to Help Habits

With the New Year starting out everyone is making resolutions and setting new goals they hope to achieve throughout the year. Only a small percentage of people, about 10-20%, actually stick to their resolutions. So why do so many people start out with good intentions, but don’t stick with it? Change is hard! Forming new habits in our brains is something that takes practice, intention and awareness and it can be challenging. At the same time, we as people are pretty amazing and are totally capable of change. The way we get through change is by forming new habits. So let’s go to the source and figure out how to successfully create and change our habits to achieve our resolutions and goals.   Here are 10 books that can help you stick to changing your habits and be more successful both at work and at home.

  1. Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones.
    By James Clear. This is one of the best habit change books written. Clear states that faulty systems are often to blame for failure to break bad habits and make good habits. The book walks you through the surest way to change your behavior, by manipulating the environments around you to make bad habits hard and good habits frictionless. Along with introducing change slowly and in small increments with the theory that tiny actions add up to progress over time. This book is bases on simplified principles of neuroscience and psychology, with clear strategies for reprogramming routines. This book is highly recommended for making lasting change.  This book made the New York Times Bestseller list and has sold of 3 million copies. “Every Action you take is a vote for the type of person you wish to become. No single instance will transform your beliefs, but as the votes build up, so does the evidence of your new identity.”
  2. Tiny Habits: The Small Changes That Change Everything by BJ Fogg, PhD
    Here is an instruction manual for making big changes in small steps. Fogg uses his two decades of research and coaching to create a proven method for making lasting change. His method will help you tackle behavior change in increments. This take on change is thought to involve less rick and allow those using it to ease into new lifestyles. It again is taking the small progress adds up to big results. This book offers a simple understating of behavior and provides exercises that help people to act on and implement the theories. This book made the New York Times Bestseller list. “In order to design successful habits and change your behaviors, you should od three things. Stop judging yourself. Take your aspirations and break them sown into tiny behaviors. Embrace mistakes as discoveries and use them to move forward.”
  3. The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business. By Charles Duhigg.
    In this book a scientific lens is applied to the concept of habit. With research and case studies, NY Times report Charles Duhigg breaks down the purpose of habits and the best practices for changing behavioral patterns. It is broken into three parts and looks at the habits of individuals, successful organizations and societies. Readers will learn how habit can have a powerful impact on action, and looks closely at the conditions that influence the formation of those routines. “The Golden Rule of Habit Change: You can’t extinguish a bad habit, you can only change it.”
  4. How to Change: The Science of Getting from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be By Katy Milkman.
    This book takes a deep dive into transformation. While exploring the optimal conditions for change and the barriers that prevent people from making the needed shifts. Milkman uses data and research to fight procrastination and laziness, rejecting conformity and help create healthier routines to help readers reach their goals. Milkman focuses on behavioral change and looking at patterns. Along the way this book is filled with motivational mantras and transformative promises supported by hard evidence of the efficiency. “We’re more likely to pursue change on dates that feel like new beginnings because these moments help us overcome a common obstacle to goal initiation: the sense that we’ve failed before and will, thus, fail again.”
  5. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. By Stephen R Covey
    This is one of the most popular books on habits. Covey identifies patterns of behavior that separate high achievers from the general population. These successful people make habits of seven similar behaviors, such as proactivity and goal-setting. Each of the seven habits are explored in depth with examples and tips about add these behaviors into your own life. While this book is mean to help you form habits it goes an extra step and teaches you how to form habits that are most likely to result in success. This book has sold over 40 million copies. “To Change ourselves effectively, we first had to change our perceptions.”
  6. Good Habits, Bad Habits: The Science of Making Positive Changes That Stick. By Wendy Wood
    This book takes a deeper look into the psychology behind behavior change. It analyzes anecdotes and provides scientific explanations as to why the attempts at change were successful or unsuccessful. Wood breaks down habit formation into basic elements of context, repetition and shows how behavior change is dependent on a combination of careful design and resilience. Wood backs up her approaches with research and scientific principles while still being entertaining. “Self-control is simple when you understand that it involves putting yourself in the right situations to develop the right habits.”
  7. Elastic Habits: How to Create Smarter Habits That Adapt to Your Day. By Stephen Guise. Readers have found this book to be one of the most interesting books on habit development. The guide post in the book is that flexible habits allow for some leeway tend to be more successful then rigid rules. Most people adopt an all-or-nothing approach and when these strict schedules prove impossible or impossible in real life, people tend to abandon goals altogether instead of amending the plan to better suit a situation. Guiese teaches you how to adapt to circumstances. For example, cutting your workout time from 45 minutes to 15 minutes on days you don’t have enough time, instead of skipping your exercise or forcing the workout and adding to the day’s exhaustion. Strict rules take extra energy that could be put to better use. You will learn the differences between static and elastic habits and ways you can set more bendable goals to better fit the demands of your life. “Elasticity is not only about increasing flexibility; its’s about increasing resiliencies to pressure.”
  8. High Performance Habits: How Extraordinary People Become That Way. By Brendon Burchard.
    This book is a study of sustained success. Burchard sets out to see what sparks ambition, why some teams achieve faster and lasting results and how some people are happier than others as they strive for success. Following the six habits Burchard lays out are the blueprints to high achievement and satisfaction: seek clarity, generate energy, raise necessity, increase productivity, develop influence, and demonstrate courage. Each habit is explored in depth and provides illustrations of leaders who exhibit these qualities and guide readers on how to develop these traits. In addition to outlining pitfalls to avoid and how to maintain these attitudes and actions long term. Burchard is a #1 New York Times Bestselling author. “Be more intentional about who you want to become. Have vision beyond your current circumstances. Imagine your best future self, and start acting like that person today.”
  9. Better Than Before: What I Learned About Making and Breaking Habits-To Sleep More, Quit Sugar, Procrastination Less, and Generally Build a Happier Life. By Gretchen Rubin.
    Here you will find one of the most useful healthy habits books. Rubin is a thought leader who writes about happiness and fulfillment. She explores how healthier habits can leader to higher contentment. You’ll find ways to make positive lifestyle changes. In additional this book opens by advocating for self-awareness, and explaining that before you start out to change yourself, you must know yourself.  Rubin also breaks down the basics of habit-forming process such as monitoring, scheduling, rewarding progress and avoiding temptation. Better than before is a nonjudgmental, step by step guide to becoming an updated version of yourself. “The desire to start something at the “right” time is usually just a justification for delay. In almost every case, the best time to start is now.”
  10. The Creative Habit. By Twyla Tharp
    This book offers more than 30 exercises to help you tap into your creative side, and promises to help restore a sense of order and peace by creating rituals, increasing self-knowledge, harnessing memories and organizing surrounding spaces. “Reading, conversation, environment, culture, heroes, mentors, mature-all are lottery tickets for creativity. Scratch away at them and you’ll find out how big a prize you’ve won.”  

Taking the time to read any of these books is sure to help you build better habits and be more successful overall. Building good habits has been proven to help us avoid the “hiccups” of life and navigate easily through life. While having good habits takes time and practice, they are achievable once you have the proper tools to help you. Cheers to a New Year and a better you!  

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