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Gretchen Rubin

Gretchen Rubin

My experiments in the pursuit of happiness and good habits

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Do You Make This Huge Mistake, When Trying to Help Someone (or Yourself) to Change a Habit?

February 26th, 2016

Episode 220 of 397 episodes

Recently, after I spoke about my personality framework, the Four Tendencies, a woman came up to me and said, “Because of your talk, I’m going to do something different.” “What?” I asked, curious. “My daughter plans to take the GRE. She keeps telling me, ‘Mom, I need to take a class.’ And I kept saying, ‘No, if you’re motivated to take the test, you should be able to buy a book and study from that.'” When I heard that, I wanted to jump up and down and say, “No, no, NO! You’re making the classic mistake! You’re saying the dreaded ‘You should be able to…!’” Fortunately, she continued, “After hearing your talk, I realize that she’s right. If she needs to take a class, she should take a class. She’s an Obliger, and she needs the accountability of a class.” I was very relieved to hear that. I’ve found that one reliable sign that we’re about to make a big mistake, when we’re trying to help someone else (or ourselves) to change a habit, is to say “You should be able to.” “If you want to exercise more, you should be able to get up an hour early and go to the ... The post Do You Make This Huge Mistake, When Trying to Help Someone (or Yourself) to Change a Habit? appeared first on Gretchen Rubin.

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