Being Specific on Goals or Habits Alone do not lead to Success

Many people believe that if they want to successfully form a habit, they need to be specific about what they want to achieve. While having a clear and specific goal can be helpful, it is not enough on its own. In fact, one of the most common misunderstandings about habit formation is that being specific is the key to success.

According to behavior change methodology, habits are not just about what you do, but also about your state of mind and other aspects of your life such as your environment, your social network, and your mindset. These can all play a crucial role in determining whether you are able to stick to a habit over the long term.

Think about the famous inventor, Thomas Edison, who was not only specific in his goal to invent the electric light bulb, but also had a strong mindset and determination to succeed. Edison famously said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” His persistence and positive attitude were essential in helping him achieve his goal.

Similarly, during World War II, the Allies were facing a huge challenge in terms of transporting supplies across the Atlantic Ocean. German submarines were attacking their ships, and many were being sunk. The Allies needed a solution, and they turned to a psychologist named B.F. Skinner for help. Skinner suggested that they use a method called “behavior shaping” to train seagulls to fly alongside the ships and alert the crew to the presence of submarines. Skinner’s method involved rewarding the seagulls for flying near the ships, and over time, the seagulls learned to associate the ships with food and protection. This innovative approach shows how changing behavior requires not only a specific goal, but also creative thinking and the ability to adapt to different circumstances.

So, the next time you are trying to form a new habit, remember that being specific is only one piece of the puzzle. It is also important to cultivate a positive mindset, surround yourself with supportive people, and create an environment that is conducive to success. With these elements in place, you will be well on your way to achieving your goals and forming new habits that last a lifetime.

That’s it for today’s newsletter. I hope you found this information helpful and inspiring. Until next time, keep learning and growing!



kAREEM syed


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

type your search

Be up to date with the latest news on behaviour change, get insights, educational resources, product updates and more.