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In Tiny Habits, Dr. BJ Fogg tells us:

“If I could teach you Tiny Habits in person, I would start our training by focusing on celebrations. … Celebrations would be first—because it’s the most important skill for creating habits. Celebration will one day be ranked alongside mindfulness and gratitude as daily practices that contribute most to our overall happiness and well-being. If you learn just one thing from my entire book, I hope it’s this: Celebrate your tiny successes. This one small shift in your life can have a massive impact even when you feel there is no way up or out of your situation. Celebration can be your lifeline. When I teach people about human behavior, I boil it down to three words to make the point crystal clear: Emotions create habits. Not repetition. Not frequency. Not fairy dust. Emotions. When you are designing for habit formation—for yourself or for someone else—you are really designing for emotions.”

Wow! Celebration: “It’s the most important skill for creating habits.”

Double wow! Celebration: “will one day be ranked alongside mindfulness and gratitude as daily practices that contribute most to our overall happiness and well-being.”

Dr. BJ Fogg also tells us when to celebrate:

“You can adopt a new habit faster and more reliably by celebrating at three different times: the moment you remember to do the habit, when you’re doing the habit, and immediately after completing the habit… when I say that you need to celebrate immediately after the behavior, I do mean immediately. Immediacy is one piece of what informs the speed of your habit formation. The other piece is the intensity of the emotion you feel when you celebrate. This is a one-two punch: you’ve got to celebrate right after the behavior (immediacy), and you need your celebration to feel real (intensity)… If there’s one concept from my book I hope you embrace, it’s this: People change best by feeling good, not by feeling bad.

There are many ways to celebrate.

You can celebrate with a word or phrase: “nailed it,” “crushed it,” “that’s like me,” “let’s go,” “boom,” “booyakasha,” “I am popping off,” etc.

You can celebrate physically with a dab, fist pump, arms up, flex, power pose, etc.

You can celebrate with visualization by remembering a great past or future best moment.

You can use purpose-based celebration by reaffirming an identity you wish to live into: “That’s like me to be a world-class parent!” “That’s like me to be a professional optimizer!” “That’s like me to be fit to serve!” etc.

You can do a strength-based celebration: “That’s like me to be grateful, curious, forgiving, hopeful, etc.

You have to figure out what works best for you with some me-search.

When I took my child to the School Carnival and Skate Station this month, I celebrated with the phrase: “That’s like me” to do something, whether I feel like it or not, for my child’s well-being.

The other day, I really didn’t want to work out, but I did it anyway. Then I celebrated: “That’s like me” to do what I said I was going to do.

Every day, I track a list of behaviors I want to engage in. If I miss two days in a row on my habit tracking, I celebrate the next day with “that’s like me” to avoid missing three consecutive days. Remember, “Emotions create habits.”

Episode 15