Information on the importance of exercise and healthy eating is certainly out there…..what lacks is the know-how to implement that information to achieve success at change for the better. “We have a huge knowing and doing gap,” stated New York Times bestselling author Kerry Patterson during our recent phone interview. “We need to [find ways] to motivate and enable ourselves,” he noted; and, that is just what Patterson and his coauthors have set out to help you accomplish with the release of their latest book Change Anything: The New Science of Personal Success
(Business Plus; April 11, 2011).
Patterson and colleagues lay out a sensible and practical guide to break your bad habits and develop good ones that can be sustained. The strategies outlined in Change Anything are based on research conducted at the Change Anything Labs in Utah, where more than 5,000 people were investigated as they strived to make a change for the better--whether it was to improve their work performance or get fit and lose weight. A lack of willpower is often blamed for our inability to maintain healthy habits; however, as a result of their research, Patterson and his coauthors contend that the key to success does not reside in willpower alone. They found that successful “changers,” regardless of their stage in life and the nature of their bad habits, utilized 6 principles of influence to overcome their challenges.
The authors explain in Change Anything that when we solely place blame for failure on a lack of personal motivation, we ignore the numerous other forces working against us. Furthermore, they note that when we try to change our behaviors we usually rely on just one approach. Patterson and colleagues describe this scenario as fighting blind while being outnumbered in our battle against bad habits. Fortunately, Change Anything provides a detailed plan to recognize the Six Sources of Influence dictating our daily behaviors and how we can skillfully manipulate and use them in combination to bring about positive results. These Six Sources of Influence are like “windows into the world," according to Patterson. In order to engage these Six Sources of Influence in our favor, we need to take an active role in discovery and be both the scientist and the subject, he explained. “We found that a characteristic of top performers was that they knew how to change a bad day into good data,” Patterson stated. That comes from a process of trial and error and learning from your mistakes.
One of the tactics presented in Change Anything to control the influence of personal motivation is to visit your “default future”--that is, the kind of life you will be living in the future if you continue with your bad habits. This can be done by taking a field trip to a place where someone else is living what you will be living if you continue with your ways, according to Patterson. For instance, an individual who is interested in losing weight to prevent diabetes may volunteer for a day at a dialysis clinic. This makes your future a reality. “Humans have an art form of denying what life would be like…..we are designed to live in the moment. It goes against our nature [to think ahead],” noted Patterson. “Tomorrow is our biggest enemy to combat the immediacy of temptation,” he stated. Patterson explained further that it is easy to give into temptation when we say “one day I will.” Visiting your default future “gives you the presence of mind as to where you could be going [if change is not made].”
Successful changers use strategies from all Six Sources of Influence in combination. Change Anything
brings to light what these six sources are and the tactics you can employ to bring about favorable results. To learn more about Change Anything
and to get purchase information visit the Change Anything
Kerry Patterson; New York Times
Bestselling Author; Phone Interview on May 19, 2011.
Change Anything: The New Science of Personal Success
Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan and Al Switzler; Business Plus; April 11, 2011.
Labels: Change Anything, Change Anything Labs, Default Future, Kerry Patterson, New York Times Best Selling Author, Six Sources of Influence