"ATOMIC HABITS" (Chapter 4): A different shift in Awareness | Keto Mom Book Club
Updated: Jul 6
Keto Mom here!
In reality, ninety eight percent of things that are happening to you is by choice. The choices that you've made and the habits you've created, it's not fate, it's not luck. I believe in blessings, I believe in gifts, I believe in lots of other things. But a lot of the things that ultimately depict your life are going to be the choices that you make. If you don't have an awareness around them, it's not fate, but the choices and the habits you created.
Points to Ponder
01:40 Discipline and consistency
02:34 Different shift in awareness
03:38 Habits, good or bad
04:19 Our brain is super interesting
05:50 Finishing people's sentences
06:46 Newfound awareness
08:14 Behavior change with awareness
09:16 A hundred percent choice every day
10:38 The lack of self awareness
12:14 Effective habits
13:52 Put it into action
15:14 Your words have power
16:33 Normal isn't working
Full Episode Transcript
Good morning! How is everybody, my name is Stephanie and Welcome to the Keto Mom page. We are diving into chapter four of "Atomic Habits" by James Clear. So for those of you who are brand new, posts "New" below, for those of you who tune in every single morning, I hope your day is great. We are going through a book every single day, we did "Rain or Shine" by Scott Alexander, in May. We did the "Miracle Morning" by Hal Elrod, in the beginning of June and for those of you who are doing the 30 Day Challenge, you're on day four. How are you feeling? You're in that first ten days of, you don't want to get up in the morning, you're not used to not hitting your snooze button eighteen times. But for those of you who do this, today I'm going to tell you something...
It does help our daughters have volleyball practice, so we left the house by 6:30 in the morning, and if you can seriously get your mindset right, get up early and read this book, it's going to help you.
I have already accomplished so much, I've gone to the grocery store, I've got stuff prepped for a day, I've got laundry started, and I did the dishes. There's things that I've already done, my kids are still asleep, and I just feel like I own my day.
So here's my encouragement, don't ever claim yourself to be a night owl or a morning person because you can be whatever you want. Meaning you can own your day, you can own the direction that your life is going in. But you're going to have to make some tough decisions, you're going to have to have some discipline and consistency. And if you do it for a period of time, it will change your life. So we're going we already went through the "Miracle Morning" by Hal Elrod, it's awesome. If you're doing it, you are on day four of your challenge, keep going. We're going through chapter four of "Atomic Habits", and there's a lot of great information in this book. He tells a whole bunch of stories in the very beginning, but ultimately the outcome of the stories is "The human brain is a prediction machine. It is continuously taking in your surroundings and analyzing the information that it comes across"... So here's what this chapter is about, and I'm going to tell you a story about how I felt.
I would say in the last six years between personal development, reading great books, being around great people and having mentors... I've had a completely different shift in awareness in my life. But I didn't just fall into it, I was taught it. I was taught to be more aware, I was taught that there was something called E.Q. and A.Q.
I was taught all of these things, which I've implemented and it's completely changed my life. Maybe you're going, "I don't get it". Listen, the power of reading, listening to podcasts, being around great people and striving after better doesn't just come. It depends on what you want, and anybody can have it, but you've got to do the work. If you want fat loss, you've got to do the work. If you want to have more wisdom, you've got to do the work. If you want better relationships, you've got to do the work. If you want to be financially free, you've got to do the work. And the work simply is this... How do you look at life? How do you handle circumstances and situations? How do you handle challenges? What are the words that are coming out of your mouth?
It all starts with awareness, are you even aware of the things that you're doing?... So in this book, he's talking about habits, good or bad. And he talks about just having an awareness of what's going on. He says "With enough awareness and practice, you will pick up cues"... I'm going to go through this real quick, he said there's cues that happen in your life.
And if you keep doing things over and over again, they become a habit, good or bad.
And we do things throughout our entire day, unconsciously because we've done them for so many years. As simple as brushing your teeth, you don't think about it but you've done it since you've had teeth, so naturally you just get up and brush your teeth. Our brain is super interesting, it's incredible, and all the things that we do. So he says, "This is one of the most surprising insights about our habits, you don't need to be aware of the cue for the habits to begin. You can notice an opportunity and take action without even consciously paying attention to what you're doing. As habits form, your actions come under the direction of your automatic and unconscious mind. You fall into old patterns because you realize what's happening. Unless someone points it out to you, you may not notice that you cover your mouth when you laugh, or that you apologize before you ask a question, or that you have a habit of finishing other people's sentences. And the more you repeat a pattern, the less likely you become to question anything that you're doing"...
I'm going to tell you a story... I talk a lot, I am an extrovert, one hundred percent I love to talk. I love people, I'm fueled by people. I could be with people all day long, my family and friends, and I love to give input. In the past, I used to think I was always right, even when I was wrong. And so there was a point in time, I'm pretty sure my husband and I were married. It was the very beginning of our marriage, and we were with his grandparents. I remember sitting around the living room, and we all were talking.
I used to have a habit of finishing people's sentences, and I was really bad at cutting people off. I did not think before I spoke, I just spoke, right or wrong. I often said dumb things, but I loved to be heard. It was super young and dumb, and so I didn't have an awareness of it because I did it all the time. Until somebody pointed it out, his grandpa looked at me one day and he said, and I don't even know if he knows this, I should remind him.
He looked at me and he goes "Do you ever just be quiet? Do you ever think before you say something?"... And in that moment, I was (dumbfounded)…
Has anybody ever said something to you, and it was the truth, but it hurt. That moment shifted, I'm not saying I was perfect but it gave me a realization, "No! I just talk"... It gave me this newfound awareness of I should be aware of what I say. Maybe I should let people finish their sentence before I add in what I want to say, maybe I should actually listen. And that's what he's talking about... We become this cycle, a hamster wheel of just doing things. Because maybe it's convenient, it's easy, and we've done it for so long. But as soon as you become aware of what you're doing, whether it's habits in your marriage, relationships, the way you speak to your kids. The way you just grab stuff off the shelf or the counter because there's a snack there, and you walk by and you grab it instinctively. The direction that you go to get to work, it's all habits. All of these things we do subconsciously, and if you want to change any of these things, you've got to be aware first. And sometimes people have to point it out to you, and it hurts, but that's the way that you change. He says "Over time the cues that spark your habits become so common that they're invisible. The treats on the counter, you grab those. You don't even realize it but you just grab it because it's in your eye view and you grab it, you eat it. The remote control on the couch, you just grab it and you flip through channels. The phone in your pocket, you just instinctively grab it. Our responses to these cues are so deeply encoded, that it may feel the urge to act upon them, no matter what. It doesn't matter where you're at. For this reason, we must begin the process of behavior change with awareness"...
If you want to change the way that you look, the way that you feel, the way that you eat, you're going to have to make an awareness of your entire day. How often do you eat, if you're bored how you walk to the refrigerator, how you walk into the employee lounge, because you don't know what to do, you automatically walk in. You smell the donut, you go get it, you walk by the donut shop and you walk in. All of these unconscious and visible cues, if you want a result, you're going to have to change the habit. It's going to give you the awareness, you might have to write it down, you're going to have to go a different direction to ultimately change the pattern. Here's what I posted in the header of this video,
"Until you make the unconscious, conscious, it will direct your life and some may call it fate"...
Isn't it funny how we have a hundred percent choice every day, and some people would say, while watching other people's lives, "Oh, they're lucky, it's fate", or "Oh, this always happens to me"... But in reality, ninety eight percent of things that are happening to you is by choice. The choices that you've made and the habits you've created, it's not fate, it's not luck. I believe in blessings, I believe in gifts, I believe in lots of other things. But a lot of the things that ultimately depict your life are going to be the choices that you make. If you don't have an awareness around them, it's not fate, but the choices and the habits you created. If you don't like this, I'm sorry. But honestly, the things that have changed in the last six years of our life, it took some hard conversations, it took people pointing things out in my life, to give me the awareness to actually change. Okay so...
"The more automatic a behavior becomes, the less likely we are to consciously think about it. And when we're done, when we've done something a thousand times before, we begin to overlook them. Many of our failures and performance are largely attributed to the lack of self awareness"...
Fat Loss, how you feel, not going to the gym, grabbing the bag of chips, grabbing the cookie, not doing your workout, sleeping in, or not reading your book, there are choices. Okay, so this is what he's gonna have you do, he says, to make a list of what you do every single day. And he's going to have you rate them, is it "Helping" or "Hurting" you. And he goes "I want you to make a list of things that you do every single day that you do, subconsciously". He gives you examples, like wake up, turn off your alarm, check your phone, you go to the bathroom, weigh yourself, take a shower, brush your teeth, floss your teeth, put on deodorant, you hang up your dry towel, get dressed, make a cup of coffee, and all of those things. So he says this, "Once you have a full list of what you do throughout the day, there's good habits, bad habits and neutral habits"....
He then takes the habits, and he gives them a positive or a negative sign. This part is super important, is this making sense? Are you guys reading the book with me, if you don't have a book, you should get the book. And just keep it on your table to remind yourself what you want in life. So he says, "I want you to make a list. There are really no good or bad habits, there are only effective habits, and an effective habit solves problems. So all of these habits will serve you in some way. They're going to affect your life in a positive or a negative way. I want you to put a plus sign for positive habits, and I want you to put a negative sign for habits that don't serve you". He says "Sometimes people might look at smoking a cigarette, as reducing stress. That's a positive habit, somebody would say, but in the long term, it will not help your health"... It's not a habit that's going to serve you. You might feel like it is but it does not serve you long term. "Does this behavior help you become a type of person that you wish to become?"...
So he said, if you look at those lists of habits, ask yourself if it is positive or negative, and does this behavior help me to become the person I want to become? Does this habit cast a vote for me for my entire identity? Remember, we talked about becoming the person you want to become, or your identity. I don't want to run, "I am a runner" or I don't want to be healthy and fit, "I am healthy and fit". And if you take that upon yourself, and you own the identity, then you can go "Does this help me become the person I want to become?"... Every morning when I grab my coffee, or when I go through the drive thru, does that help me become a healthier person. Does hitting the snooze button and not going to the gym serve me? Here's the deal, you got to put it into action.
You might have to physically get out a piece of paper and write down the things that you find yourself doing out of habit. To be aware, to figure out the plus or negative, to take action, to make the pivot, and to switch the habit. You're going to have to do it, for consistency, at least thirty days. To get it into your subconscious, so that you don't do those things anymore.
Alright, the goal is to simply notice what is actually going on, to make the observation. So lastly, he says "If you eat a chocolate bar every single morning, I need you to acknowledge it. Almost as if you were watching somebody else do it. Oh, how interesting that would be to do such a thing. If you were a binge eater, simply notice what you were doing what you were eating, the calories that you're intaking. If you waste time online, notice what you were doing, spending time, wasting your time".
He says "First of all, it's going to be noticing it. The first step to change a bad habit is to be on the lookout for them.
If you feel like you need extra help ask people to point it out for you. If you really want to cut back on your junk food or bad habits, by noticing yourself grabbing another cookie, say this out loud... I'm about to eat this cookie, but I don't need it"... Isn't that funny? Your words have power. What if you walked by your countertops and you were to grab something and go "I'm not hungry, I have goals, I'm not going to eat the bag of chips"... What if you walk by the the employee lounge and instead of going in, you catch yourself and you go "I have goals, I'm not going to walk in the employee lounge to get that donut. Okay, everybody, look at me, I'm not walking to get the doughnut"...
He says because "Hearing your bad habit spoken out loud makes the conscious seem more real"... I'm not gonna hit my snooze button, your spouse might think you're crazy. "I'm not gonna hit my snooze button, because I have goals. I'm going to get up in five four three two one"... Have you guys ever read the five second rule by Mel Robbins. She talks about doing things and counting backwards by five, and you do it. It's an incredible book, Mel Robbins - The five second rule. Anytime you want to do something five four three two one, get out of bed. Five four three two one, walk past the donut shop. Five four three two one, put down the bag of chips. Five four three two one, just do it, take the action or don't take the action, don't do it, or make the pivot. So he talks about speaking it out loud, and you might sound crazy, but who cares. Normal isn't working, and we tell our kids all the time "We don't need to be normal, because normal in the everyday American life is not working"... I'm not even going to go down the route of what normal looks like, but I hope that you can figure it out.
We don't need to sleep in, we don't need to binge watch TV in the summer. We don't need to play video games, we don't need to eat crap. We don't need to do all these things that other people are doing, because we're not going to be normal.
And if you want to create the lifestyle change and the habits that ultimately will serve you, you're going to have to not be normal. You're going to have to make this decision to go after what you want. So ultimately, that was it.
He talks about being aware of all of the choices, decisions and all the habits that you have, and you may have to speak it out loud. Or write them down, positive or negative, are they're serving you or not serving you.
I love this book and I love talking about this. My goal is to help you just have an awareness of your life, because as soon as you can do that, I guess it's not easy but it's simple. It's simple to take the buns off the burger, to grab water instead of a mountain dew. It's simple to order at a restaurant meat and veggies instead of the pasta. It's the habits, the awareness and the mindset, and as soon as you get that under control, everything else will fall into place. So I hope you enjoyed that chapter, and continue to tune in. We'll do this every single morning.
That's all I've got for you. I hope you guys have a great day and we'll talk to you soon.
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