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Badass Habits

Cultivate the Awareness, Boundaries, and Daily Upgrades You Need to Make Them Stick

By Jen Sincero
10-minute read
Audio available
Badass Habits by Jen Sincero

Badass Habits (2020) is a lighthearted guide to developing positive habits. This manual lays out a step-by-step approach to breaking old patterns and creating new ones.

  • Stubborn people looking to drop old behaviors
  • Apathetic folks looking for some motivation
  • Anyone aiming to build better habits

Jen Sincero is a life coach, motivational speaker, and author of multiple best-selling guides to self-improvement. Her works include You Are a Badass, You are a Badass Everyday, and You are a Badass at Making Money.

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Badass Habits

Cultivate the Awareness, Boundaries, and Daily Upgrades You Need to Make Them Stick

By Jen Sincero
  • Read in 10 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 6 key ideas
Upgrade to Premium Read or listen now
Badass Habits by Jen Sincero
Synopsis

Badass Habits (2020) is a lighthearted guide to developing positive habits. This manual lays out a step-by-step approach to breaking old patterns and creating new ones.

Key idea 1 of 6

To change your habits, change who you are.

Meet Alice. At 30 years old, she realized she was in a toxic relationship. Not with a parent or a partner, but with sugar. Every time Alice indulged in sweets, she’d get terrible breakouts, worry about weight gain, and generally just feel awful.

Something had to change. So she stopped buying and binging on snacks, sought advice from dietitians, and even watched documentaries demonizing sucrose.

These steps helped, but it always felt like she was one bad day away from slipping back into her old sugary ways. In the end, Alice had to change not just her actions but her whole identity. She had to become a person who simply didn’t eat sugar.

The key message here is: To change your habits, change who you are.

To put it simply, a habit is a routine, action, or behavior you engage in over and over again. Essentially, it’s what you do when running on autopilot. Habits can be positive patterns, like always putting on your seatbelt when driving, or destructive ones, like constantly misplacing keys, jewelry, or other valuables.

Habits work by connecting a trigger to a response, then connecting that response to a reward. Consider a habit like daily exercise. The trigger could be seeing your gym on the way home from work. The response would then be stopping in for 40 minutes of cardio. The rewards? The rush of endorphins and a feeling of accomplishment. Importantly, the more often you follow this sequence, the more automatic and ingrained it becomes.

Of course, you probably aren’t aware that the sequence is taking place; if you’re like most people, many of your habits are completely unconscious. So the first step in making any change to your routines is to identify them. To do that, reflect on your actions, as well as the thoughts and feelings associated with them. For someone like Alice, this meant looking at when sugar binges happen. Did stress trigger them? What reward did they offer?

Once you become aware of the sequences behind your habits, you can consciously alter them. This requires redefining your identity to fit the new habits you want. So Alice needed to stop seeing herself as a sugar-addicted ball of stress and instead cultivate an identity as a healthy, happy eater. Once you truly see yourself as a different person, your unconscious sequences will fall in line more easily. We’ll look at one way to establish an identity in the next blink.

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