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Wrap-up of articles and videos from 2020

2020 covid habits influence Dec 09, 2020

Influencing Action

Two simple rules for influencing action – on friction to make the old behaviour unappealing and the new behaviour appealing.

Let’s talk behavioural models – (video) on what makes a good behavioural model and what are some of the best to use.

Nanette-ing your approach to influence – The comedian’s role, Hannah Gadsby shared, is to deliberately create tension so they can then relieve us of it. The same approach goes for pitches, presentations and...

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Two simple rules for influencing action

friction habits influence Nov 25, 2020

When it comes to changing your own behaviour or someone else’s, two simple rules are:

  • Make the existing behaviour unappealing, and/or
    Make the new behaviour appealing.

Make the existing behaviour unappealing

To reduce the likelihood an existing behaviour will continue, just add friction. For example:

  • Slowing elevator doors by just 16 seconds influenced more people to take the stairs. Signs to save energy and improve health didn’t work, but friction did. (Van Houten, Nau &...
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The trick to portion control

habits time unit bias weight Nov 10, 2020

Public awareness campaigns crop up now and again to remind us how much one standard alcoholic drink is. In Australia, for instance, that means approximately 285 mL of full strength beer, 100 mL of wine or champagne and 30 mL of spirits.

The problem is most of us judge by the container not the contents, making a perceptual rather than intellectual judgment — much it looks, not how much it actually is, so these awareness campaigns are largely ineffective.


Unit bias

This is in part due to...

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When it comes to habits, should you moderate or eliminate?

For some, moderation works. My mother, for example, can leave food on her plate and limit herself to two squares of chocolate a night.

For others, elimination is better. I am prone to eating everything on my plate and gobbling two ROWS of chocolate. I am therefore better to serve smaller meals on smaller plates, eliminating the decision whether and how much to leave. Eliminating chocolate from the house also works best for me.

Whether you are wired to moderate or eliminate will have a large...

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The other reason you are so tired right now

covid habits system 1 system 2 Apr 15, 2020

You might be feeling more tired than usual at the moment.

Understandable if you are working harder than ever, but what if you aren’t?

Some of us have long expanses of unscheduled time on our hands. No more travel. No more commuting. No more gyms, dinner parties or sporting events.

Why so tired, then?

The other reason you are tired

Partly this may be due to stress and anxiety. Your body is working overtime to remained composed, with your parasympathetic nervous system trying to calm the...

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