Transforming Your Habits with James Clear




This week’s podcast features my interview with James Clear from It’s a mini course on transforming your habits and self improvement for entrepreneurs, athletes and creatives.

James is one of my favorite online personalities and his blog is one of the few that I read religiously.

He is a entrepreneur, weight lifter, photographer and an expert on transforming your habits.

He writes about psychology and habit formation as it applies to business, entrepreneurship, health and fitness, and creativity.

I was actually pretty nervous about interviewing James. In fact, immediately following the interview, I was pretty disappointed in myself because I wasn’t sure I had crushed the interview.

I beat myself up pretty bad! I felt like I had blown my big chance to interview one of my online idols.

I didn’t even listen back to the interview for weeks. I sat on it because I was embarrassed that I had fucked it up.

But recently I forced myself to sit down and listen to it. Guess what I found?

It’s good…Really, really good!

I’m not saying I was good but James was great and most importantly the information was truly valuable.

It’s jam packed with strategies and tactics that you can start applying today to transform negative behaviors and easily build new, positive habits that will truly transform your life and business.

I was tempted to do a lengthy, detailed breakdown of all the great strategies in this post but there is simply too much to cover without making this “show notes” post insanely long.

Instead I’m going to give you just a quick overview of some of the topics covered here so that you will listen to the interview or it will serve as a quick recap if you’ve already listened.

I’ve also put together a free 10 minute audio download that is a quick recap of a few of the highly actionable lessons from our conversation

Click Here for a free audio gift! “10 Minutes to Transform Your Habits”

Here’s Some of the Highlights

Keystone Habits

James explains that a Keystone Habit is a behavior that helps pull the rest of your life in line. We discuss that for him that habit is weightlifting and for me it’s getting up early.

Morning Rituals

Morning rituals are key because you can get your important stuff done before the urgencies of the day hit and while your will power is still at it’s peak.

Habits vs. Routines

James makes a distinction between habits (such as biting your nails) and routines (such as going to the gym). We discuss how you can make it easier to do those routines by making the beginning of the behavior more automatic. For example if you want to run 2 miles when you wake up, lay your running shoes out and prep your water bottle the night before…then you can just quickly slip on your shoes, grab your water and head out the door without much thinking or effort. “It’s sort of like an on ramp for your behavior. By making the beginning more mindless and automatic, you make it easier to follow through.” “We often think motivation is something you need to feel before you get started but what we really need is to just make it more automatic to get started.” “Typically we don’t fail after getting started. We fail to get started at all!” “Motivation often comes after you begin not before.”

Behavior vs Results

In the beginning, the most important thing is to build the behavior not get the result. It helps to focus on building the behavior of becoming the type of person who works out and doesn’t miss a workout first then worry about the performance and outcome.

Systems vs. Goals

Most people are 90% goals/results focused and 10% systems focused. James makes a persuasive argument as to why it should be the other way around. “The goals will show up anyway if you commit to the system” He discusses three ways that systems are more powerful than goals.

Short Term Feedback Loops

The best strategy for long term behavior change is short term feedback” Seth Godin

“Identity Votes”

“Each time you take an action, It is a vote for the type of person you are and the identity you have.”

Environment Change and Designing for Laziness

How can you structure your environment to make the lazy or automatic choices better? “It’s really easy to make better choices when you are surrounded by them.”

We discuss all these topics and much more so please check out the episode and look for my series of actionable mini lessons on the blog soon.

You can have them sent direct to your inbox by signing up for the mailing list and as a free bonus I’ll hook you up with a free 10 minute audio recap of the key lessons from this episode.

Sign up here:

Click Here for a free audio gift! “10 Minutes to Transform Your Habits”


James has put together a free guide for you called “Transforming Your Habits”. You can get it here by simply signing up for his email list

James Clear publishes new posts every Monday and Thursday at



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