From habits to leadership: applied self-improvement to target specific growth

This week in Better Humans, we have both breadth and depth. I’ll share some top picks, but scan the list because there’s much more here!

One is A Guide To Enjoying Snorkeling by Learning To Overcome Common Fears by Gringo Curt. It’s a niche topic—that’s what we mean by “breadth” of coverage—but I’ll bet you find it an enjoyable read, even if you never plan to snorkel. Consider it a study in helping anyone overcome a fear, using applied behavior science.

For depth, this week we published several articles that dive into how to be a more effective leader. Do…

Weekend reading for the shamelessly curious

This week, we published two excellent excerpts from newly released books. One shows you how to access the underlying desires that make your goals achievable—very powerful stuff!

The other can help you learn more quickly by understanding the brain’s two learning systems. Which one should you try to engage to learn more quickly? That depends on what you’re studying.

We’re also looking for your best tips on breaking a bad habit—get a jump on the big summer of freedom by breaking your worst ball and chain.

All of that—and much more—are below!

Goal-Setting Doesn’t Work. Here’s What Does.

Understanding the systems of desire that influence what…

Writing Prompt

Stopping’s not hard. It’s not starting up again that’s the problem.

Image credit: Rattankun Thongbun.

One trick that helped me quit smoking was to reassure myself that I could start again on the day I turned 80 years old.

For some reason, that held the flood of grief, anxiety, and pain at bay when I started to trip out over the anticipated agony of an endless overwhelming tortuous future of constant craving.

When it comes to reading about habits, the thing I hate the most is reading advice on quitting a bad habit from someone who’s never broken a really bad one. Give me hope, yes. But give me some understanding that you experienced at…

No B.S. algorithmic “content”—just a list of great self-improvement inspiration and advice we’ve published over the last week.

Image credit: csy302.

Happy Sunday! For your weekend reading, here’s our anti-algorithmic list of everything new on Better Humans this week.

Want some editor’s recommendations? Try these two:

And read…

This same technique can help you find a coaching niche or a new side hustle

Image credit: tadamichi.

We’re often asked why a how-to article that seemingly fills all of our requirements isn’t accepted for Better Humans. Often, it’s because the topic of the article is far too general and, consequently, too bland for it to engender much excitement.

Here’s how to find better things to write about:

  1. Grab your favorite note-taking tool, and make a list of self-improvement topics that you’re interested in writing about.
  2. Throw the list away and resolve to never write about those things. Trust us: it has all been written before.
  3. Now imagine yourself at some kind of gathering. You’re hanging out with…

Here’s your complete rundown of everything new on Better Humans for the past week.

There’s a lot of brilliant advice in this collection. If you’d like some pointers, I recommend How To Overcome Resistance To Change in Yourself (and Others) by Cindy Shaw because I’m a big fan of good reads that reveal how physical challenges teach us better ways to approach life.

And for something very practical, 5 Things I Do to Avoid Passing Out in the Doctor’s Office by Louisa Skye is very valuable for anyone with a fear of doctors, needles, and associated phobias. If you’ve ever…

Have you ever wondered if your quest for good habits has a dark side?

This is what we call the “To what end?” question. It’s a practice of looking deeper and developing a more wholesome approach to productivity and self-improvement.

Recently I saw a tweet where someone described being “livid with themselves” over their perceived failure to follow through completely on their journaling habit. And my heart sunk when I saw that. I don’t want to be a part of any habit-building that leads to someone being enraged at themselves. We don’t need that in the world.

Hopefully, that tweet…

This week, we covered everything from the joy of small adventures in your neighborhood to the triumph of big achievements like doing 1,000 pushups in a single day. Here’s your anti-algorithmic (hand-crafted!) list of everything from Better Humans over the past seven days.

Our picks? For a novel take on something akin to minimalism, check out Burk’s I Keep a List of All the Clothes I Own. And if you feel like you’d like to have more satisfying conversations, see if anything from Charles Amemiya’s 4 Ways We Irritate Other People Without Realizing It resonates.

How To Handle a Toxic Manager, With Chris Sowers 🎧

You might not be able…

Image credit: netrun78.

What sleep habits do you have down, and which are problematic for you? You might be surprised! Take our free Sleep Habits Assessment here—it only takes a couple of minutes. You can go take it now and come back before reading on if you like.

The highest possible score on the assessment is an 18—and that high score is totally achievable based on very reasonable expectations. …

Our anti-algorithmic list of goodies for the shamelessly curious

Image credit: amenic181.

We believe you’re a curious person who’d prefer to scan through what we have to offer, rather than have a machine pick for you. (Otherwise, you’d never find new things to try!)

So below is our anti-algorithmic list of everything we published on Better Humans over the past week, in date order.

But if you’re just looking for a read that’s as funny as it is gratifyingly insightful, we recommend you go right to How I Met My Foul-Mouthed Celebrity Spirit Guide: A True Story by Betty Ray.

That—and a wonderful lineup of other articles—are all linked below.

Five Steps for Mastering Autogenic Training

Teach yourself…

Terrie Schweitzer

Editor, Better Humans, for Bubbles, amateur pyro, hawk watch/birding, permaculture, zen, Gaia lover. RPCV Ghana 2011–2013.

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