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CHANGING FOR THE BETTER: Good Habits, Bad Habits, & New Things - #1

by Rick Baker
On Jan 19, 2010
This is the first blog of a 10-blog series about Changing For The Better.
The Purpose: (1) to introduce the important role habits play in performance and (2) to provide some examples of ideas and 'tools' to help people create success-directed habits.
People only do 3 things: (1) Good Habits, (2) Bad Habits, and (3) New Things.
Some may argue that's an oversimplification…however, as yet, I have not felt the need to expand the list.
Good Habits contribute to our betterment.
Bad Habits do not.
New Things may or may not contribute to our betterment.
When we set goals defining what 'our betterment' means we generally wish to use our Good Habits, reduce our Bad Habits, and perhaps do some New Things.
When we do New Things we end up either turning them into Good Habits or Bad Habits or we stop doing them.
It makes sense to try doing New Things to create new Good Habits.
Often, and this is important to this blog series, we choose to do New Things in a conscious effort to remove Bad Habits and replace them with Good Habits.
New Things are often the only mechanisms that will help us to move from Bad Habits to Good Habits.
Enough theoretical stuff…at least for now.
Here's a video clip of how I picture Good Habits, Bad Habits, and New Things…
Some things to think about…
  • There's a 'thin line' between Good Habits and Bad Habits
  • One good way to move from Bad Habits to Good Habits is - Doing New Things
  • Doing New Things: the choices are essentially infinite
  • Doing New Things = Change
  • Doing New Things that lead to our betterment = Changing For The Better
Changing For The Better…that's what this 10-blog series is about. The next blog will talk about Habits and introduce some of the ways we can expand our Good Habits, effect Change, and achieve our goals.

Comments (37) -

Rick Baker Canada
1/8/2011 9:22:47 PM #

"Habit is habit, and not to be flung out of the window by any man, but coaxed down-stairs one step at a time."

Mark Twain

Ron Beveridge Canada
4/7/2011 11:50:32 PM #

Hello Rick -- The Now Habit at Work is book I will buy within the next few days.  This is an area I am currently working to impove.  Great quote by Mark Twain.  Your video of how you picture good habits, bad habits and new things, makes one think.


2/5/2012 5:57:20 PM #

"A thought constantly repeated at last becomes a fixed habit of the mind, and from such habits proceeds the life."

James Allen
'Out From The Heart', (1904)

rick baker
3/25/2012 7:14:14 PM #

“Every fault you allow to become a habit, to get control over you, helps to make you second-class, and puts you at a disadvantage in the race for honor, position, wealth, and happiness.”

Orison Swett Marden
'Pushing to the Front', (1911)

rick baker
3/28/2012 8:15:03 PM #

7 Good Habits

Habit 1: Be Proactive
Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind
Habit 3: Put First Things First
Habit 4: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
Habit 6: Synergies
Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw

Stephen R. Covey
'7 Habits of Highly Effective People', (1989)

rick baker
3/28/2012 8:26:37 PM #

"We can, for example, introvert periodically to examine our own bodily and psychological reactions to change, briefly tuning out the external environment to evaluate our inner environment. This is not a matter of wallowing in subjectivity, but of cooly appraising our own performance."

Alvin Toffler
'Future Shock', (1970)

rick baker
4/15/2012 10:14:17 PM #

"The cure of habit depends on keeping the right idea before the mind - either that of a goal or that of a consequence of yielding."

Frank C. Haddock
'Power of Will', (1907)

rick baker
4/21/2012 6:44:59 PM #

"Cultivate deliberate act and movement in all things, and you lay more and more the solid foundation for courage, either moral or physical."

Prentice Mulford
'Thoughts are Things", (1889)

rick baker
4/23/2012 10:00:52 PM #

"The lesson is pretty clear. If you want to make change - I mean, really want to make a change - you have to be willing to do it right now. Not later, not tomorrow, not after the weekend, not on January 1, and certainly not only when that eternally elusive perfect moment arrives."

Dr. Doug Hirschhorn
'8 Ways to Great', (2010)

rick baker
5/26/2012 6:40:43 PM #

"We usually move from avoidance and confusion to attention and clarity only when we perceive that it is necessary. It was Plato who gave us that wonderful maxim: Necessity is the mother of invention. Necessity is simply the perception that something must be given more attention (i.e., improved) and that the perceiver is the one to do something about it. Once we deem it necessary, we begin to look over what we had previously overlooked, until we see a better way."

Laurence G. Boldt
'ZEN and the art of making a living', (2009)

rick baker
1/22/2013 8:41:56 PM #

"98 percent of us fail at keeping resolutions to change our bad habits."

Joseph Grenny, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan, & Al Switzler
'Change Any-Thing', (2011)

rick baker
2/3/2013 9:47:40 PM #

"Nothing so needs reforming as other people's habits."

Mark Twain

rick baker
5/26/2013 8:09:18 PM #

"That nothing is good except what leads to fairness, and self-control, and courage, and free will. And nothing bad except what does the opposite."

Marcus Aurelius
'Meditations', (170's)

rick baker
7/13/2013 9:57:10 PM #

"As people are walking all the time, in the same spot, a path appears."

"New opinions are always suspected, and usually opposed, without any other reason but because they are not already common."

John Locke
British Philosopher (1632-1704)

rick baker
8/13/2013 12:10:30 AM #

"The world we have created is a product of our thinking; it cannot be changed without changing our thinking."

Albert Einstein

rick baker
11/24/2013 10:46:05 AM #

"To change a habit, make a conscious decision, then act out the new behavior."

Maxwell Maltz
American Cosmetic Surgeon and Author [PsychoCybernetics]

rick baker
12/7/2013 4:06:27 PM #

"There's no such thing as a single good habit or single bad habit. All of them have Buddies."

Zig Ziglar

rick baker
4/6/2014 10:17:03 PM #

"Your net worth to the world is usually determined by what remains after your bad habits are subtracted from your good ones."

Benjamin Franklin

rick baker
6/10/2014 9:25:14 PM #

“Wisdom is seeing something in a non-habitual manner.”

William James

rick baker
8/14/2015 7:32:23 AM #

"We do a thing, then do it again, and again, and again, until it becomes easy and perhaps almost automatic; and the same rule applies in breaking any and all bad habits; we stop doing a thing, and then avoid it again, and again until we are entirely free of it; and if we do fail now and then, we should by no means lose hope..."

Charles Haanel, 'The Master Key', (1917)

rick baker
8/18/2015 8:07:49 AM #

“The mind that opens to a new idea never returns to its original size.”

Albert Einstein

rick baker
9/6/2015 2:20:16 PM #

"Reject nothing because it is old. Approve nothing because it is new."

Frank Channing Haddock
'Power of Will', (1910)

rick baker
9/24/2015 1:32:48 PM #

“H is for Habit, winners make a habit of doing the things losers don't want to do.”

Lucas Remmerswaal - Author
'The A-Z of 13 Habits: Inspired by Warren Buffett'

rick baker
9/24/2015 1:43:43 PM #

“The key to every man is his thought. Sturdy and defying though he look, he has a helm which he obeys, which is the idea after which all his facts are classified. He can only be reformed by showing him a new idea which commands his own.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

rick baker
9/24/2015 1:44:22 PM #

“We are told we must choose — the old or the new. In fact, we must choose both. What is a life if not a series of negotiations between the old and the new?"

Susan Sontag

rick baker
10/12/2015 12:09:53 PM #

"We are often imprisoned in the cage of our own abilities and routines, which provides us with a sense of security."

Alice Miller
Swiss Psychologist & Psychoanalyst, (1923-2010)

rick baker
12/12/2015 4:34:17 PM #

"Habits are safer than rules; you don't have to watch them. And you don't have to keep them either. They keep you."

Dr. Frank Crane
American Minister and Speaker, (1861-1928)

rick baker
12/12/2015 4:37:00 PM #

"Habit is necessary; it is the habit of having habits, of turning a trail into a rut, that must be incessantly fought against if one is to remain alive."

Edith Wharton
American Author, (1862-1937)

rick baker
12/12/2015 4:38:54 PM #

"Good habits, which bring our lower passions and appetites under automatic control, leave our natures free to explore the larger experiences of life. Too many of us divide and dissipate our energies in debating actions which should be taken for granted."

Ralph W. Sockman
American PAstor, (1889-1970)

rick baker
12/12/2015 4:39:30 PM #

"Successful people are simply those with successful habits."

Brian Tracy

rick baker
12/12/2015 4:41:16 PM #

"The only proper way to eliminate bad habits is to replace them with good ones."

Jerome Hines
Opera Singer, (1921-2003)

rick baker
12/12/2015 5:10:38 PM #

"I could always flip between emotions and be available to suddenly do something new. I think it's a part of playing, and you hang onto it when you're a kid."

Dominic Monaghan
English Actor, (1976- )

rick baker
12/12/2015 5:13:24 PM #

"To change a habit, make a conscious decision, then act out the new behavior."

Maxwell Maltz
American Cosmetic Surgeom...then Psychologist, (1889-1975)

rick baker
12/12/2015 5:21:10 PM #

“All of the great leaders have had one characteristic in common: it was the willingness to confront unequivocally the major anxiety of their people in their time. This, and not much else, is the essence of leadership.”

John Kenneth Galbraith
Canadian/American Economist, (1908-2006)

rick baker
2/28/2016 4:19:05 PM #

"There is nothing good nor bad but thinking makes it so."

Hamlet [Shakespeare]

rick baker
6/10/2016 10:02:43 AM #

"Tribes need leadership. Sometimes one person leads, sometimes more. People want connection and growth and something new. They want change."

Seth Godin
'Tribes', (2008)

rick baker
8/2/2016 3:23:06 PM #

About working on 'moral perfection'

"While my care was employ'd in guarding against one fault, I was often surprised by another; habit took the advantage of inattention; inclination was sometimes too strong for reason."

Benjamin Franklin, 'Autobiography', (1784)

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