The Habit Society

💡It’s not you, It’s your environment

To: Society Members

Good Morning!

We’re happy to see you’re still eager to learn more. Now listen closely, this one is important.

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It’s Not You, It’s Your Environment

This is probably the only time we’re going to say that you shouldn’t take responsibility for your own actions. So, take advantage of this free pass.

We tend to get down on ourselves for grabbing those cookies over and over again, but luckily you don’t have to blame yourself. You can blame it on your environment.

Meal Prep

Timolina via Canva

Your environment can make completing your habits very simple, or almost impossible.

Monkey see, monkey buy

We all know what it’s like when an online ad convinces us that we all of a sudden need this product to survive, even though we’ve gone three decades without it. Without this prompt, we never would have thought we needed it, and the same goes for the cookies on the counter. You see it, you want it. If you design your environment to only see what will lead to habits that will serve you, you are more likely to be successful.

With this mindset, you can stop blaming yourself and start feeling more in control. Wendy Wood, Professor of Psychology, put it perfectly: “[This mindset] leads to self-forgiveness. You realize that it’s not your personal failing that you can’t change unwanted behaviours”. It’s your environment. Maybe it wasn’t such a bad thing your roommate lost your Juul for the 5th time this month.

Get on the bandwagon

We can make our environment better. This is why meal prep has been such a hot topic recently. When you get home from a long day of work, you’ll grab the easiest option (which is most likely those Sweet Chilli Heat Doritos). Had you prepped your meal in advance, you’d be much more likely to eat according to plan.

Insight by Psychologist Wendy Wood & author James Clear

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How to set up your environment:

1. Recall the habit you are trying to implement.

2. Create the most conducive environment for doing so.

Example:

If you want to read more, put your book on your nightstand.

If you want to run in the morning, put your running shoes by the door.

If you want to improve your sleep quality, remove all electronics from your bedroom.

3. As for your negative patterns, become conscious of the things in your environment that will lead you to perform unwanted behaviours, and modify them. Throw away the Doritos.

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“Motivation is overvalued. Environment often matters more.”

– James Clear

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