Acquiring a New Skill Will Require *This*

 For some endeavors, all you need to succeed is knowledge and a good reason to follow through. As long as you have a good set of instructions, you should be able to succeed on your first try. 

Acquiring a skill, however, requires knowledge plus practice.

 If you expect to succeed at a skill without allowing yourself time to practice, you’re likely to be frustrated.  (And we don’t want that!)

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Lashing Yourself to the Mast

If you have ever come up with a scheme to keep yourself from succumbing to temptation, you have experimented with a thing called a commitment device. As you’ll see, you are not the first to try this.

In this episode, we’re talking about different types of commitment devices and whether they might be useful in staying on track with whatever you are trying to accomplish in your life–whether that’s breaking a bad habit, establishing a new behavior, or meeting a challenge that you’ve set for yourself.

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Be Careful What You Optimize For

As a society, we place a very high value on optimization.

Now that it’s so easy to track your nutrition, sleep, exercise, productivity, your stock gains or weather, you naturally want to optimize them. 

What we don’t always acknowledge is that optimizing for one thing is likely to cost you gains in at least one other domain. 

In this episode, we talk about why it’s so important to be clear on exactly what value you are optimizing for–-and what you are willing to sacrifice in order to do that.

It is a tricky balance to find but well worth the effort. 

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Why We Crave What We Crave

Our evaluation of a certain experience can be heavily influenced by things that actually have nothing to do with it. For example, if we happen to be very thirsty when we sample a new beverage, we may later remember it as being far better than it actually was.

It’s called attribution bias. And if left unexamined, it can lead us to make choices or decisions that are not based on our actual goals and values.

As with so many other things, correcting for attribution bias starts with becoming aware of its existence.

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Stress vs. Stressor

According to a recent survey by the American Psychological Association, 84% of adults reported feeling stressed out. Two-thirds say that they feel overwhelmed by the issues they face.

This is no way to live, much less thrive.

In this episode, we’re going to talk about the importance of distinguishing between stress and stressors. Because this can be the first step toward reducing their negative effects, both on our bodies and on our lives.

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How to turn Stumbling Blocks into Stepping Stones

Every path to success includes its share of stumbling blocks.

We may stumble when we’re trying something new and don’t yet know where the tricky parts are. (Fair enough!)  And then there are those things that we seem to stumble over and over again.  You’d think we’d learn how to avoid them! But one of the reasons that we don’t is that we focus on the wrong part of the story.

In this episode, we’ll show you how to turn stumbling blocks into stepping stones on the road to success.

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It’s not me, it’s my ADHD (with Dr. Monica Johnson)

In this episode, psychologist Dr. Monica Johnson talks with Monica about the ways in which people with ADHD often struggle with various aspects of behavior change–whether that’s staying focused on the goal, following through on plans, or resisting impulses that lead them astray.  

It’s not just a lack of willpower or commitment. And there are some strategies that can help.

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Law of Subtraction: Why you should do less to reach your goals

When we become aware of a gap between our present reality and our desired reality, our inclination is to add something. A new practice. A new program. A new effort. When that doesn’t work, we go back to the drawing board and add another thing. 

What if the answer were not to add something new but to subtract something that is not working, or not pulling its weight? 

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