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Scott Eblin offers his take on lessons in the news and his advice on your pressing leadership questions.

Habit Hacks That Make a Difference

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If you’ve been reading this blog for awhile you know that I’m into simple things that are easy to do and likely to make a difference. In my new book, Overworked and Overwhelmed, I call them habit hacks. The manuscript for the book is already done so it’s too late to include a fantastic habit hack I heard last week from a participant in our Next Level Leadership® development program. That doesn’t mean, though, that I can’t share it with you here.

In the development program, the participants are working on building their leadership presence by being more present. One of the ways we’re supporting the “being more present” part of the equation is by having everyone create their own. When this participant considered how she is at her best and the routines that support that, that she realized she had an easy-to-do opportunity that would make a big difference in the relational domain.

Both she and her husband have very demanding jobs and had gotten into a pattern of spending their evenings complaining to each other about all of the frustrating things that had happened over the course of their respective days. When she stepped back and thought about the impact of that on their moods, their outlooks and even their sleep, she realized that they needed to change that.

So, their new routine is that they spend at least the first hour of their evening together talking only about things that went right during the day. The topics can be work-related or not related to work. They just have to be things that made them happy during the day.

She reports that the impact of making this simple shift has been huge in terms of strengthening their connection with each other while at the same time reducing stress. Because they’re not getting themselves so spun up, they’re sleeping better and, as a result, are enjoying work more the next day.

For them, focusing on the positive for the first hour of the evening was a habit hack that was relatively easy to do and is definitely making a difference. 

What easy-to-do, likely-to-make-a-difference habit hack do you want to try this week?

(Image via PhotoSGH/Shutterstock.com)

Executive coach Scott Eblin’s goal is to help you succeed at the next level of leadership. Throughout the week, he’ll offer his take on the leadership lessons in the news and his advice on your most pressing leadership questions. A former government executive, Scott is a graduate of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and is the author of The Next Level: What Insiders Know About Executive Success.

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