• Environment influences behavior, so if you have a behavior you want to change then you need to create an environment where the change can occur. For example, if you are addicted to technology and want to look at your phone less, tweak your environment by choosing where to put your phone during the day. If you leave it in your car, you will force yourself to function differently.
  • Your potential is shaped by what surrounds you. Other people’s perception of us can hold us back, and real change may require finding a new audience who will see us differently.
  • Most people are living small not because they lack talent, but because their situation isn’t demanding more of them. When resources are at a minimum, we tap into our distinctive strengths to not only survive, but grow.
  • For writers: know that book agents will ask “Who are you? Why do you have the expertise to write this? Who is going to buy what you are selling?” Take on market risk and play where no one is playing to hone your craft, build your audience and establish a social media presence.
  • Practical tip: Think of something you want to get done in the next six months and find a way to change your environment, as well as what the situation demands of you, to make you more likely to achieve your goal.
  • Go out and buy Willpower Doesn’t Work!

Benjamin Hardy was going nowhere. After barely graduating high school, he admits that he spent 12-15 hours a day playing World of Warcraft while living at his cousin’s house with no job. He wanted to be better, but didn’t know how to take that desire and transform it into action.

It wasn’t until Benjamin’s environment changed that he realized he had the capacity to be different. Years later, Benjamin is a foster parent to three children, one of the top contributors on Medium, a PhD candidate in psychology, and author of the powerful and compelling book, Willpower Doesn’t Work. In our conversation, Benjamin shares that even though he is an avid consumer of self improvement books, the popular concept that all change comes from within is at odds with what psychology studies have long shown—environment influences behavior. If an individual truly wants to change, they need to address environmental factors that encourage their existing behavior patterns.

Benjamin is generous in this interview, not only in his advice to those who seek change but also to those who are looking to write and get their work published as he did. He shows how it is possible to go from “dreamer” to “do-er,” and I hope that you enjoy our conversation. Click on the podcast above, and pay attention near the end of the podcast to hear a special gift available to my listeners.

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