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Summary

One afternoon - after another failed attempt to get motivated to exercise - I (accidentally) started my first mini habit. I initially committed to do one push-up, and it turned into a full workout. I was shocked. This "stupid idea" wasn't supposed to work. I was shocked again when my success with this strategy continued for months (and to this day). I had to consider that maybe I wasn't the problem in those 10 years of mediocre results. Maybe it was my prior strategies that were ineffective, despite being oft-repeated as "the way to change" in countless books and blogs.

I was right.

Is there a scientific explanation for this?

As I sought understanding, I found a plethora of scientific studies that had answers, with nobody to interpret them correctly. Based on the science - which you'll find peppered throughout Mini Habits - we've been doing it all wrong.

You can succeed without the guilt, intimidation, and repeated failure associated with such strategies as "getting motivated," New Year's Resolutions, or even "just doing it." In fact, you need to stop using those strategies if they aren't giving you great results. They don't work because they all require you to fight against your subconscious brain (a fight not easily won). It's only when you start playing by your brain's rules and taking your human limitations seriously--as mini habits show you how to do - that you can achieve lasting change.

©2013 Stephen Guise (P)2014 Stephen Guise

What listeners say about Mini Habits

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I'm a mini habits convert

If you could sum up Mini Habits in three words, what would they be?

Life Changing System

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It has already changed my life

Any additional comments?

I've tried a dozen self-help books and none have delivered. Mini Habits is so simple and easy, yet makes complete sense and even though I have only been doing the system for a short amount of time, I have already seen results beyond anything I've tried before. If you procrastinate horribly or just want to change your life for the better, then look no further.

4 people found this helpful

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Excellent

Had actually done some work prior to this book on small habits but it's certainly the way to go for coaches or clients both.

The brain does not like change so we must do regular small changes often to achieve new things - definitely worth a listen

1 person found this helpful

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enjoyable listen with a good message

Would you try another book written by Stephen Guise or narrated by Daniel Penz?

probably

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

bearing in mind this is non-fiction I would say alternative examples could be given as the text is sometimes very repetitive .

Could you see Mini Habits being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

n/a

Any additional comments?

This had a very good message and presented a far more realistic approach to achieving goals/changing your life etc. It was however very repetitive and would have easily made a much smaller book. There seemed to be a lot of elaboration on ideas that was not really necessary.Having said that it was a good listen!

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Amazing. Definitely worth a read

It’s a very simple concept but it’s very eloquently explained. It makes a case to try out very simple actions and trick our brain into excepting the habit. A Brilliant strategy for procrastination. I way I see it .....

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Useful

Simple life advice, once you think about it. Get into a habit of doing something and before you know it, it's like as normal as going to the toilet.

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highly recommended

Great book. the advice is counter-intuitive but works extremely well. Having set countless ambitious goals in the past (only to fail them later despite good intentions) this system is perfect for me. I also recommend it for anyone who finds that the pressure of having ambitious goals actually detracts from their success in the long term (and finds that they definitely don't "thrive under pressure"). He does repeat himself by making quite similar points on multiple occasions. However, this does help to reinforce the main concepts of the book (which are extremely useful) so I recommend reading/listening to the whole thing, putting up with the occasionally repetitive style and learning a brilliant system for developing habits that will stick in the long term.

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Great book.

It is easy to digest and follow. Got me going to the gym without much resistance.

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Fascinating and helpful

I'm glad I persevered with this book despite the off-putting style of narration. To my British ear the narrator sounds like a game-show host! It draws on neuroscience to chart a course through the frustrating world of trying to build good habits and to explain why my previous efforts have been so ineffective! I'm only halfway through the book but if it continues to be this good I think it's going to be a HUGE help.

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great simple idea

a great simple idea that I am implementing with an android app. wish me luck.

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Helpful read

Make it small and it gets done. I come back to this mini habits principal every time I flounder at my now enormous daily routine... Thanks Stephen!

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  • Sara
  • 26-11-14

Breaks Things Down Into Tiny Do-able Bits

This isn't a book that will wow you with facts and research and science. Instead, it is a book that makes huge and often overwhelming goals possible. The theory and method presented are based on the author's personal experiences of creating change in his own life. I agree with other reviewers -- there is something strangely liberating about the idea of setting your goals so low that you can easily meet them. Then from these tiny goals bigger change begins and builds. Worth a listen if you need a new and simple approach for attacking the problem of feeling bogged down and want to start building new daily habits. A positive listen.

52 people found this helpful

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  • ANDRÉ
  • 30-11-14

Mini Habits May Work for You (and Myself)

Although it is a small book and the writer tries hard to fill it up with scientific knowledge, the soul of Mini Habits is simple: create few-- up to 4-- mini habits, even laughable ones (like do one push up), and follow the script (or don't break the chain).
And yes, it may work.
I did something like that when I was writing my first book. At the time I was a resident at a cardiology hospital, my wife was pregnant, and I told myself: write one page a day and please don't break the chain. Most of the days I wrote 3 pages, and couldn't get hold of myself. I completed the book before my daughter was born.
Now for my second book I cannot write one page a day-- It seems too much effort. I have 2 kids, many patients to see, well, almost impossible (or so I think). And I postpone. I know that I could find time to write. Maybe if I told myself: "write 5 LINES each day" I could had completed my second book years ago.
Good idea, Stephen Guise!

32 people found this helpful

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  • David
  • 20-09-16

Surprised by how deeply helpful the thoughts in this book are

I started out listening to this book thinking that it sounded kind of gimmicky, but halfway through things clicked and I saw what he was talking about in my own life. I already, accidentally, have a whole lot of mini habits in process, some good and some bad. The further into the book I got the more powerful the concept became as I realized this dynamic is already existing in my life and he is showing me how to tap into that dynamic and leverage it for increased productivity.

12 people found this helpful

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  • Powerful Eric
  • 07-09-16

Outstanding Book!

What made the experience of listening to Mini Habits the most enjoyable?

I have read countless books on self-improvement. This book is incredible! Buy this book now. I had a habit of setting big goals. I would even break down the big goals, but Mini Habits makes it easy for you to succeed! Thank you Stephen Guise for a great book! Also, thanks to Daniel Penz the narrator of the book to make it so easy to listen to. The narrator can make or break a audiobook. Well this is a grand slam!

11 people found this helpful

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  • Belinda
  • 14-04-15

Great idea

Would you listen to Mini Habits again? Why?

No, because you don't have to listen repeatedly to get the idea.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Mini Habits?

It's not a fiction book, so no such thing to me.

Have you listened to any of Daniel Penz’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

Any additional comments?

The idea is very good. I have been using it for several days. The general idea is that you should stick to stupidly small habits, such as one push-up a day, instead of bigger ones that need more will power. The whole book is just using different words to rephrase this idea. Very repetitive. But anyway, it's a great idea, so the idea itself is worth a credit. I have used it for 3 days now, and actually I am more on top of everything because of the mini habits. Will see how this works in the long run.

9 people found this helpful

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  • ultamusicbuff
  • 14-09-16

Finished in one day (ironic, given the theme)

Having just completed 7 books on the brain, habits and focus, this was the perfect book to sum it all up and take action. I am going to put measures in place to make sure I maintain the core principles.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Meredith
  • 10-10-14

Procrastination In A Whole New Light!

I enjoyed this book very much, including the narrator. And I asked myself this morning--after all the books I've read and listened to--why I was still procrastinating, checking off lists, putting lists into shorter lists, etc. etc. etc. Is it just me or does this book resonate with the very core of the problem, which is always the "getting started" part? This book is light (which I liked), but to the point. I began using it before I'd finished it, which was over two days. If you are someone who feels overwhelmed by the projects you want to do, I believe this book will help you. I'm sure I've never had a book get me moving so quickly and easily.

14 people found this helpful

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  • turtlefarmgirl
  • 24-11-14

Forget motivation - 'stupid small steps' are it

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely. I've read a lot of time management books in my career - and a lot about getting motivated, dealing with procrastination, etc. This book has an entirely new perspective that I found very helpful and refreshing. Development of habits is far more important than motivation for maintaining forward progress. Seems to be well researched.

Who was your favorite character and why?

n/a but I like the tone and humor of the author.

What does Daniel Penz bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Penz is a good narrator for this author (who looks so young in his online posts that I might not have purchased the book if I had seen his picture first). On this topic, a natural instinct (at least for me) is that I want to hear from someone who's had more life/work experience.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

It just surprised me at how it addressed an issue that I have that I've never seen addressed before: habits can take the emotion out of tasks so that you can do them whether you're "in the mood" or not.

13 people found this helpful

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  • Knalli
  • 27-09-16

Best self development book I know!

My preferred genre of audio books is self development and this is by far the best Ive heard, because it so practical and actionable that you cannot fail if you apply the advice that it gives.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Henrik Oetinger
  • 26-09-16

Changed my life

Very powerful knowledge that completely changed the way I think about creating new habits for my self. My mini habits have already begun to change the way I live, two weeks into them. This is a must read for anyone honestly.

4 people found this helpful