61 Examples of Good Habits
John Spacey, September 30, 2020
Good habits are repeated patterns of behavior that benefit an individual. These are important because once established, habits are often repeated such that they can produce significant results over time. The following are useful habits that don't include anything overly obvious such as eating well, exercising and brushing your teeth.
Respecting TimePlanning in minutes and showing respect for your own time and that of others. For example, finishing a meeting in 12 minutes if that's all that's required.
GreetingsThe habit of greeting and saying goodnight to people such as family, neighbors and coworkers. As with so many forms of politeness, it is easy to drop this but things feel less social when you do.
IntroductionsRemembering to make introductions in social situations where it may be expected.
Shared ExperienceEnjoying shared experiences with those around you on a regular basis. For example, eating a proper social meal with your family at least once a day.
Random Acts of KindnessDoing something nice for someone where there is no expectation that you do so. For example, buying someone a small gift when it's not their birthday just to show you're thinking of them.
Senseless Acts of BeautyPursuing a sense of wonder once in a while. For example, spontaneously organizing a star gazing outing with your family without any specific reason to do so.
Direct CommunicationGetting to the point while your audience is still likely to be listening.
Intent to UnderstandListening with intent to understand where it makes sense to do so. This doesn't mean you can't filter out uninteresting information in some efficient way.
CandorBeing forthcoming with information where it is useful.
TactAvoiding harsh honesty that is likely to hurt people.
Process GoalsThe practice of setting goals for what you will do as opposed to what you want.
BacklogA backlog is a prioritized task list. Any and all ideas for improvement can be added to your backlog. Only those tasks that are prioritized are ever completed.
SprintsChoosing the most important thing on your backlog and getting it done in a very short period of time.
FlowFlow is an uninterrupted state of high productivity and creativity. Find a way to achieve and sustain flow and make this a habit.
Backlog RefinementKicking things off your backlog once in a while because they are stale or weren't a good idea. It is also possible to start a new backlog if your existing backlog is a mess of mediocre ideas.
Last Responsible MomentThe practice of waiting until something really needs to be done before doing it. This runs contrary to the conventional wisdom that it is better to plan ahead and start early. However, people with very high overall productive output tend to be last responsible moment. It may be that urgency creates productivity such that doing tasks long before they are due is inefficient.
Messy DeskThe observation that highly productive people may have a messy desk. This suggests that it is better to be obsessed with your core work as opposed to being overly concerned with trivial issues such as clutter.
Mise en PlaceMise en place is the conventional wisdom that it is highly important to organize your workspace before working. This does make sense in some situations. For example, if an organized workspace will mitigate a serious safety issue.
Reducing ToilThe process of automating or implementing tools that reduce unpleasant and repetitive work.
Self-DisciplineSelf-discipline is the practice of doing what needs to be done even if you're not feeling particularly motivated.
Single TaskingCompletely immersing yourself in a task without distraction.
Pareto PrincipleThe pareto principle is the theory that 80% of value is created with the first 20% of work. This isn't necessarily true but is an interesting concept for avoiding needless perfectionism.
Selective PerfectionismPerfectionism is often portrayed as an entirely negative impulse. However, it can make sense to do things correctly or create work items of very high quality. For example, a product that is very well designed may outsell a product with a mediocre design by 100x.
PersistenceOvercoming challenges and solving hard problems by not giving up.
Accepting FailureThe process of recognizing failure to find value in it such as a new direction.
Fail WellFail well is the practice of designing things to fail quickly, cheaply and safely. For example, renting equipment the first time you try a sport as opposed to buying high-end gear before you start.
Systems ThinkingSystems thinking is the practice of identifying the unintended consequences of actions.
Risk TakingRemembering to be brave and to resist complacency and mediocrity.
Risk ManagementRisk management is the practice of identifying risks and managing them. Critical to risk taking.
GratitudeThinking of reasons to be thankful and expressing gratitude to others on a regular basis.
Positive FeedbackProviding positive feedback to others. For example, complimenting others on their cooking when they've prepared a meal.
Critical FeedbackGetting on top of problems by providing others with critical feedback. This only applies where you have responsibility to the person to let them know.
Tolerance for DisagreementAdopting the pragmatic view that there is a great diversity of thought and that people will disagree with things that you believe.
CoolnessThe practice of not caring about things that you need not care about. For example, accepting that people are imperfect and not letting this stress you out.
PlayThe pursuit of joy for its own sake.
CuriosityThe habit of investigating things to satisfy and nurture your curiosity.
ExperimentsExperimenting to develop new knowledge that is relevant to your pursuits.
OptimizationThe practice of measuring, improving and measuring again in fast cycles that make something better and better.
Big Picture ThinkingStepping back from detail-oriented thinking such as optimization to challenge your most basic assumptions.
Self-DirectionThe habit of leading yourself and others by making decisive decisions.stakeholders. Fights the tendency for people to imagine that you have committed to things that you haven't accepted as action items.
Setting ExpectationsMaking it clear what you expect from others. It is unfair and problematic to expect things that you haven't clearly communicated.
TransparencyProviding others with all the information that they could possibly need.
Random DecisionsThe practice of using a random process such as a coin toss to make a decision to avoid overthinking. This applies to situations where options are more or less equally attractive or where the impact of the decision is low.
Small TalkStriking up conversations with people, even if you don't know them well. For example, getting in the habit of talking to people from other teams around your office.
Touching BaseInitiating a conversation once in a while to keep social connections active.
Reading PeopleThe habit of trying to sense how people are thinking and feeling.
Self-MonitoringSelf-monitoring is social pragmatism whereby you monitor how you are likely to be perceived. This can include awareness of appearance, personal hygiene, eye contact, body language, personal presence and the content of your communications.
Quality TimeScheduling time for family, friends, community, altruism, leisure, recreation, exercise, learning and other important pursuits. Prioritize these as you would an important work assignment or meeting with a client.
ForgivenessThe process of forgiving people allows you to move on without the burden of resentment.
OptimismThinking about the good in situations and people including the future potential of things.
Defensive PessimismConsciously thinking in different modes. For example, generating ideas with optimism and validating them with pessimism.
PragmatismFocusing on what you can realistically control and compromising to get things done in a complex and imperfect world.
SideliningThe process of moving quickly forward by sidelining resistance. For example, a musician who ignores harsh critics because they know they are creating good music.
RedirectionRedirecting negative or inappropriate emotion and motivation into something positive. For example, using feelings of regret to push yourself to be better.
VisualizingImagining how things could be without constraint.
UnaffectednessThe habit of not allowing others to derail your mood or path. This doesn't mean that you are oblivious to criticism but that you have high self-confidence such that you aren't sensitive to the negativity of others.
Good HabitsThis is the complete list of articles we have written about good habits.
If you enjoyed this page, please consider bookmarking Simplicable.
TrendingThe most popular articles on Simplicable in the past day. Recent posts or updates on Simplicable. Site Map