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Are Your Habits Holding You Back Or Moving You Closer To Success?

Are Your Habits Holding You Back Or Moving You Closer To Success? It is a good idea to take a good look at your habits. Your personal habits, your work habits and your business habits. What is a habit?
From online dictionary –
hab·it –noun
1. an acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it has become almost involuntary: the habit of looking both ways before crossing the street.
2. customary practice or use: Daily bathing is an American habit.
3. a particular practice, custom, or usage: the habit of shaking hands.
4. a dominant or regular disposition or tendency; prevailing character or quality: She has a habit of looking at the bright side of things.
5. addiction, esp. to narcotics (often prec. by the ).
6. mental character or disposition: a habit of mind.
7. characteristic bodily or physical condition.
The reason for placing this list of descriptions is for us to conduct an exercise. Write down two personal habits you have which clearly fall into two of these categories from 1 to 7. Do you have a personal habit you know annoys others? Write that habit down. What category above is that habit in? Okay, now think about your business and how you work. Write down three specific habits you have about how you work? What category are each of these habits in? Are these three habits high quality habits which you would teach others to learn? Let’s stay on your business and how you work. Write down three habits you have about how you work which you know are non-productive and these habits hold you back. Look at each one of these habits for a few minutes. Why do you have this habit? What do you need to do to change this habit? Is there another habit or behavior you know you should replace this habit with. Write down the new habit underneath the one you must replace. Now follow this same conversation with each of the other two non-productive habits. This will permit you to manage your habits. It is a way to hold yourself accountable.
A more effective method of conducting this exercise is to work with a mentor, a coach who will laser focus into you, your habits and your personal definition of your path to success. Take your personal inventory on a regular basis of your habits if you work with a mentor or coach or not. Your habit structure will propel you forward with great speed or hold you back indefinitely. The choice is yours.


  1. Thanks for sharing Mitch! Everytime that I’m ready to make a quantum leap at my business I always examine the habits that are ready to be released so that I can make room for the new..:)

  2. Mitch,
    Reading your article felt like a powerful coaching session within itself! You could have charged for it:) Thanks for the great instructions. When we hit a snag professionally or personally–you can usually trace it back to a habit.
    Kiyla Fenell

  3. Such a great exercise, Mitch! Thanks for sharing your expertise with us all. XO, Katherine.

  4. conscious habits are the best tool to have to build your success!
    unconscious habits can stir up all kinds of trouble

    The best thing is to grow in consciousness so habits become a choice

    • Yes Laura I agree. The danger is not paying attention to the habits we do have and if they are positive or negative influence impact items for us. Mitch

  5. Mitch ~

    This is a great exercise – it’s funny that certain habits came to mind instantly that I know don’t support me very well. It’s also frustrating that I hang on to them. Time for a change. Thank you for sharing this habit-changing strategy. Tomorrow is a new day (right after labor day)!

    Love & Health,


    • Robin, Thank you, I really do hope you will take action on this and I wish you success in working on improving your habits. Mitch

  6. Oh boy, am I in trouble! I am soooo habitual.

    • Oh Lynn, You are not in trouble. Just select one or two habits you know – need to go – and make it happen.
      Determine what habit needs to replace these and practice at it. Make these your new habits. You can do it. Mitch

  7. Mitch,

    What a great way to become aware of (and correct) personal and professional habits that may be affecting our lives without us even realizing it.

    This is a great exercise for anyone who wants to be more self-aware and take steps to break habits that are not helpful.

    Write on!~


  8. Great exercise, Mitch! I’ll try this to get control of my habits – I have some good one, but I know I have some bad ones as well

    • Patricia,
      We all have some bad habits. Select one, personal or business, and decide to stop. Maybe you need to replace it.
      Maybe you do not. The point is to end the bad habit. Mitch

  9. Mitch,
    Thanks for taking the time to walk us through this step by step habit process. Very helpful!
    Dr. Robert Fenell
    Repetitive Strain Injuries

  10. Great info, Mitch! Even when we are successful, it is so easy to fall into a rut or simply get lazy and let bad habits creep in. I recently filmed myself speaking and was mortified at how many “uhms and ahhs” had crept into a talk I have given dozens of times.

    Thanks so much for the great reminders…


    Phil Dyer

    • Phil,
      I appreciate your comment. And your tip, it is about time
      I filmed myself for a critical review process as well.

  11. Great exercise. I do a habit inventory any time I feel stuck, and your post gives me the idea to do it as part of my regular planning. Thanks.

  12. Hi Mitch,

    Great article. Thanks for sharing!


  13. Really great exercise, Mitch! Such a simple concept but it can be SO revealing and potentially very powerful if you really take the time to think about it. I think using a coach to get laser focused on what habits you have that might be getting in your way is such great advice. Sometimes, it is easier for someone else to see things about you more clearly than you can see yourself.

    • Jessica,
      You are right Jessica. Clients working with me have this partner arrangement.
      When conducting this virtually I should add an element of a partner for recognition.


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