The Truth About Creating Habits

I put this video together after a few conversations with friends about the idea of good habits versus bad habits. I know there are many personal development and self improvement books and systems that talk about habit creation. I have heard that habits can be created in as few as 26 day. I have also heard that 90 days of repeated action can ingrain a habit into your life.

While I do believe some of the rationale behind this, I have had a hard time seeing this in attempts to apply it in my own life. For me, success habits require a lifetime of commitment. You cannot stamp a habit with a 90 threshold. It is about the life you want to create and the lifestyle you want to live.

Check out my video and then please give me your feedback on this topic. I would really like to hear from other personal development enthusiasts as to how this lesson has impacted your life.

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7 Responses to The Truth About Creating Habits

  1. Ted Payne May 28, 2010 at 10:30 am #

    Great video – and great point.

    I think the 26 day challenges, or 90 day challenges are great to jump start a “habit That said I think even the term habit is a bit misleading. not in terms of your video, but in general – like when you see these 90 day challenges. I don’t think posting to a blog or working out will ever be as natural as a habit for me.

    However, like you alluded to in your video – those things can be part of a lifestyle and I think that is what people need to change.

    “Gurus” often talk about “Change your Habits in 13 days”. I think this preys on people who are looking for a quick fix. People want quick, instant and easy gratification these days – they think they can follow some system for a couple weeks and then go on auto pilot. I wish! The reality is a change of lifestyle takes dedication and persistence – not an eBook.

    I am really glad you made this video! I think it was important.
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    • Justin Popovic May 28, 2010 at 11:04 am #

      Thanks for the comment Ted. Awesome feedback as well. I agree that people need to understand the difference between a habit and a ritual. Habits tend to occur without thinking. Rituals are deliberate behaviours that produce results if they are repeated enough times.

      Great insight.

    • Stan Young May 30, 2010 at 7:22 pm #

      Hey Ted

      I like your comments about so called Gurus, and people wanting instant gratification but it is so true!
      People that talk in time frame like 26 or day 90 days is merely a starting point.
      I have a life long habit of health and fittness, even after many years working out ,it still take some degree of discipline and dedication to drag myself out of bed on cold morning’s and scrap the ice of the car window to get going. I guess I can liken this anology to starting marketing on the internet didnt have a clue when I started and then started scratching my head wondering why I wasnt getting the results.
      New habits and skills take time, dedication and discipline to form and we somtimes become impatient and expect to become competent over night.

  2. Hulbert Lee May 28, 2010 at 4:03 pm #

    Hey Justin, I think I understand what you’re trying to say here. And I didn’t really know so until gave that great example. You went through 90 days working out and not touching alcohol, but you were waiting for that 91st day to come so you could not work out and drink some alcohol.

    This basically means that we can’t just go through out habits for a certain amount of time and wish for them to stick with us forever. We should commit to always sticking with those habits, not for a time to expire, but for the habits to naturally happen by themselves without having to think about it.

    I’ve wanted to get over my obsessive compulsive habits for a very, very long time. They are very hard to get over because I have unconsciously developed these compulsive habits ever since I was a child until now. But your inspiring video has given me hope to try again and use your philosophy to regain new and more healthy habits.

    Thanks Justin!

    • Justin Popovic May 28, 2010 at 6:20 pm #

      Hi Hulbert,

      Thanks for your feedback. You make a great point about commitment. It is still okay to have a 90 day challenge to create a habit, so long as your goal is to make this new action a life long activity. I appreciate you sharing your challenge with obsessive compulsive habits. I know many people who have the same kind of challenge and I commend you for continuing to work on it and improve day by day. Well done!

  3. Stan Young May 31, 2010 at 1:39 am #

    Hi Justin great topic I really enjoyed this blog.

    Your comments and thoughts are very true. The 90 day programs dont tend to work for me either I agree you need to work new habits into your life style. As I mentioned to Ted I have been working out daily for most of my life but still need to remain disciplined and focussed when dragging myself out of bed on cold mornings.
    My wife is a YO YO dieter she is always trying new schemes to loose weight but surprise, surprise none of the programs ever seem to work.
    Not wanting to create a feud I keep my lips sealed. Another example of there is nothing wrong with the program just the lack of ones commitment to work it into her life style.
    This is also important for me striving to become a successful Entrepreneur, I know there are multitude of systems out there that are producing results, its up to me to copy the habits of other successful Entrepreneurs to get the results I desire. A cop out would be to blame the system or program! There are many powerful messages in your blog that cover every aspect of life. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this great topic.
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    • Justin Popovic May 31, 2010 at 8:36 am #

      Thanks for your feedback Stan, great insight. It is very easy to blame a system or a program but the truth is they are only guidelines. In the end, every single person will find their own path to success and all of the systems out there can only provide assistance in helping someone find their own way.

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