Have you heard of the term keystone habits? Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit coined the term in that book and describes it in more details in an article lifehacker entitled The Right Habits. As Duhigg explains:
Some habits, say researchers, are more important than others because they have the power to start a chain reaction, shifting other patterns as they move through our lives. Keystone habits influence how we work, eat, play, live, spend, and communicate. Keystone habits start a process that, over time, transforms everything.
Duhigg goes on to explain that Keystone Habits have 3 characteristics:
Characteristic One: The Science of Small Wins
Small wins are exactly what they sound like. A huge body of research has shown that small wins have enormous power, an influence disproportionate to the accomplishments of the victories themselves. “Small wins are a steady application of a small advantage,” one Cornell professor wrote in 1984. “Once a small win has been accomplished, forces are set in motion that favor another small win.” Small wins fuel transformative changes by leveraging tiny advantages into patterns that convince people that bigger achievements are within reach.
Characteristic Two: Create New Platforms
The second way that keystone habits create success—and can be identified—is by looking for patterns that create new platforms from which other habits can emerge.
Characteristic Three: Establish a Culture Where Excellence Is Contagious
The final characteristic of identifying keystone habits is to look for those moments when excellence—or change, or perseverance, or some other virtue—seems to become contagious. Keystone habits are powerful because they change our sense of self and our sense of what is possible.
Reading Duhigg’s article made me think of what my Keystone Habits are. Through my first 9 blog posts to date I’ve identified 3 Keystone Habits for me. I think anyone else can apply these in his or her lives.
I’ll periodically update this list as I recognize more Keystone Habits.
If you have any Keystone Habit you employ please share them! I’d love to hear from you!
Thanks for reading!