Stop AI taking your job, by learning to build “Ice Sculptures”

In this podcast, Dr Jon Finn warns the challenging world we live in means we can easily but inadvertently ‘learn’ habits which damage our health, happiness and performance (individual and collective).

He also highlights why it is important to recognise that we are living in an attention economy and there is a ‘war’ for our eyeballs.

To overcome this, we need to recognise how our brains work and how we can apply this insight to feel better, do better and be more productive every day.

Dr Jon also discusses how the challenges of managing change can be successfully overcome.

Podcast Transcript
Hello Habit Mechanics, Dr Jon Finn here. Welcome to another episode of The Habit mechanic podcast.

Today we’re going to cover some really central and important ideas in what it takes to be your best and this is the currency of how we actually build better habits how we become happier and healthier but also how we become more stressed and worried more and beat ourselves up but today’s a really important episode I’m joined today by my friend and colleague Andrew Whitelam. Andrew, how are you doing?

Yes hi there Jon great to be speaking to you again and um as you say the these chapters in the book that we’re referring to are uh really important and pivotal moments I think that was my reaction when I read them and I’m looking forward to speaking to you about them and I think before we move on it’s perhaps just worth recapping so far the the podcasts we’ve produced in recent weeks uh which cover the book and take the Deep dive into the book um five chapters in total have been covered uh chapter one focuses on the T plan chapter two um focuses on the introduction to the method you use and why traditional methods are not fit for purpose any longer and and the Habit mechanic approach must be embraced um chapter three talks about the language the specific language that you use when you work with people to become habit mechanics and and work with them on me power conditioning and then chapter four is the the detailed look at this idea of Black Box Theory and why it’s it’s not appropriate when it comes to understanding yourself and developing yourself and we talk about the great sporting moment in in British sporting history the four minute mile by Sir Roger Bannister and then finally chapter five talks about learning which we will come on to today.

But in a different way I wonder Jon if you have a moment just to just to give us a couple of thoughts just to recap each of those chapters starting with chapter one The TEA plan yeah in chapter one we felt it was really important to give people something quick and practical to get going with which is the daily TEA plan the tiny empowering action we can see people in the app doing that every day and having mechanic University other people and get for free so that you can start to build some positive change momentum chapter two we really want to we really wanted to map out why we need to take a different approach if we want to be at our best it’s harder than ever before we’ve only been able to look inside human brains for a very short window of time and therefore most of the things we’ve been trying to use to help us to be at our best were not designed with the brain in mind we didn’t know the rules of the game if you like and if you don’t know the rules of the game you can’t win the game now we know the rules of the game and we know that the only way to be at our best is to become a habit mechanic when in chapter two we map out the book and this manual for Life till kids toolkit for Success that took me over 20 years to write on all the tools that are within the book from a personal perspective um so you can become a habit mechanic sir the tools around building better sleep down exercise Stress Management confidence performing the pressure Focus productivity so you can get better work-life balance but also the chief habit mechanic tool toolkit so that you can build High performing teams you can become a better Role Model, Action Communicator, Cultural Architect, Swap coach build High performing cultures chapter um three introduces the language and in that in the episode of the podcast we dug into some specific

bits of the language but also some of the specific tools as well and unpack those.

We feel it’s really important to have a shared language because brains and our Behavior are the most complex thing in the non-universe so it’s going to be easier to get the most out of ourselves manage our ourselves in a helpful way and help others to manage themselves in a helpful way if we have a shared language chapter four is where we’re trying to give a real practical demonstration of the downside of Black Box theories and how Roger Bannister was able to capitalise on using Cutting Edge insights from from science and use that to take his own personal performance to another level and beat the competition whilst doing so and then chapter five was the first step into really understanding how learning happens and why it’s so important and why it’s our secret superpower um and hopefully we spelled some myths around learning in nine depth per chapter and also I think the 10 intelligence factors are really helped for people understanding how to break down how learning actually happens yeah so that’s a quick summary of the first five chapters and we’ve done a podcast on each one so people can look back and listen to those yeah yeah thanks Jonthat’s really helpful and and certainly do yeah have a look back at recent podcasts on on whichever platform you get your podcast from and they’ll all be there listed for you uh and the details of each chapter just if you wanted to reference those you you will be able to see those in the podcast notes um but but very well worth listening back to so thanks very much for that Jonum as I say we’re going to talk in this episode about this idea this concept of learning and um look at it in a very different way and perhaps an alarming way for some people but before we start to do that um I wonder if you could just tell us a little bit more about uh some news you’ve had in terms of the one-to-one leadership uh coaching you offer yeah so we’ve launched the new one-to-one leadership coaching package which is really exciting I’ve worked with thousands of leaders but I’ve decided to bring all of our training up to up to date if you like to to to include all The Cutting Edge new tools we’ve developed and actually last week we created a free training video on this which is in the one-to-one leadership page um cut one-to-one leadership coaching page of our of our on our website and the title of that training video is learn how to improve your peoples and TEAms happiness and performance by over 25 in 90 days using the new science-based five-step framework so you can watch that video on our website and we really unpack I really impact the challenges of leadership in the modern world it’s harder than ever to be a to be a leader but being a great leader is also more important than ever before and I share two models I’ve developed over the last 17 years or so one is called the five stage TEAm power model and the other is called the four-step TEAm power Leadership Model and I explore my metaphor of a leadership which is about moving a mountain you and your TEAm moving up a mountain together on snowmobiles the top of the mountain is your TEAm’s mission and so on and so forth so you can watch that video for free on the website the one-to-one leadership um poaching then we call it the one-to-one chief habit mechanic coaching program it includes 10 hours of one-to-one coaching with me we do that over six 90 minute sessions people would normally do that over about a three month period so it’s not one session where you learn a few nice ideas we work together over a sustainable period of time and the ideas I share I’ve have time and time again sure that they can quickly improve A TEAm’s performance by over 25 and also leaders performance you’re also going to learn how to use a proprietary Chief habit mechanic metrics these are assessment tools for your habits but also your TEAm’s habits so you’ll learn how to use those you’ll also learn how to use our 30 plus award-winning Chief public mechanic habit building tools so you can start to build new super habits for yourself and learn how to destroy your destructive habits if you want to you can also learn how to do that for your TEAm you’re also going to learn if you want to how to use our proprietary culture development reflection tool this shows leaders how to use nine action Factor model to supercharge their culture so they can develop a purposeful development culture which is more important than ever in the the vuca post-pandemic world if we want to help our people to be at their best and ourselves as part of the the one-to-one chi fabric mechanic coaching program you’re also going to get copies of the having mechanic book for your people your TEAm and also you’ll get some access to the premium level of the Hamilton mechanic University up for your people so that if you want to you can start to help them to build better habits and finally well you’re going to join an exclusive group of certified habit mechanic leaders because we’ve we’ve um we’ve trained up certified have mechanic leaders before um which is this this is going to help you to stand out in the in the marketplace which is overly crowded and if you want to we’ll give you um a certified habit mechanic leader certificate so you can pin it on your wall and show off about how much you know about the leadership compared to compared to others so yeah we need to move past this idea of if we tell leaders a list of things that they need to get good at then that’s going to be enough we actually have to help leaders to build better habits and that’s what this one-to-one coaching program is designed to do so if you’re interested go to the website and check out the free training video and if you want to have a conversation about working together let’s do that

yeah thanks for that overview Jonuh really useful and I know news of that um program dropped into inboxes in recent days and uh as you say go to tougherminds.co.uk and look in these services and products section and you’ll you’ll see um the page in the video John’s referring to thanks that that’s great uh so Jonlet’s get into the meat of this podcast then um we’re looking in detail at chapter six and seven of the Habit mechanic book um and the title of chapter six certainly caught my attention when I read it and I know it’ll catch many people’s attention you refer to this what we’ve described as a secret superpower for people I.E learning can also be incredibly damaging and problematic and you’ve described it as fighting a learning War please do tell us more yeah well we’re learning all the time the things that we’re good at we’ve had to learn to do but also we’ve learned how to do the things that we’re not very good at for example beating ourselves up worrying getting stressed procrastinating eating the wrong types of food not sleeping as well as we’d like to not exercising as much as we’d like to and if we just think about the lockdown situation in the pandemic that forced us to learn a new set of behaviors because we couldn’t leave the house as much as we wanted to we had to communicate via Technologies we have to do lots of different things that we we hadn’t habitualized before so we are in a learning wall and the the war the people we’re fighting against is largely big corporates that are trying to get us to do what they want us to do because they their money ties our attention and they know that if they don’t get us to keep paying attention or to keep consuming their products and services then their shareholders are not going to be very happy unfortunately a lot of the things that they want us to do to increase the share prices of their organizations just not very helpful for us um you know one of the examples I give in the chapter is the which this is the verbatim article news story I think it was in the Vanity Fair magazine it’s one of the heads of the big streaming services saying that their competition is sleep and they’re winning they’re beating sleep essentially so they’re making people stay up later that is helpful for them we know the negative impact or sleep has on brain function and therefore mental health and therefore things like working and things like stress and things like beating yourself up and things like procrastination and you had the boss of a huge corporate Global entity bragging about that um you know it’s there in black and white so we’re in a war we are and we’re being hijacked all the time to do some really unhelpful things I just actually saw I know you want to come in a second and you’ll be just reminding me I saw on on the front page story of uh front page of a Broad Street newspaper this morning is one of the little pop-out stories it was it must have been a journalist from that newspaper saying I turned my phone off and it’s revolutionized my life you know it’s like yeah you know we’ve been talking about this stuff for nearly 10 years now but um it’s great to see it’s great to see people starting to wake up I suppose yeah I’m sure we’ll come on to talk about the smartphones rolling all this uh very shortly Jonand um how it plays its role in the in this potentially damaging and and self-evidently damaging learning War um but just interestingly I just like to to pause in a way and talk about what he said about the streaming services and and yeah we don’t need to mention a particular one I’m sure but we all know them and we all use them um what’s happening then in scientific terms in brain terms when these these streaming services will show you an episode of something you like something you’ve selected and then immediately um on their screen their interface if you like that they’re starting to show the next one before the current ones finished in in neurobiological terms that’s quite significant isn’t it I believe yeah so in real simple terms our brains number one operating rule is to save energy so we’re designed to survive and the core currency for survival is energy we don’t have any energy we can’t operate it’s like your car doesn’t have any petrol or any battery charge now you can’t go anywhere so our brain all the time is looking to save energy so you know previously I think The Sopranos is really interesting in those early HBO series because they’re captured their capture their their captivated people’s attention and they’ve got lots of traction but I’m I like The Sopranos and um probably because I lived in that neck of the woods for a while and it’s just it’s really interesting to me but I didn’t have HBO so when I first saw the surprise it was on DVD so I would have literally to change the next episode maybe a DVD I don’t know Sopranos box that might have had three episodes on it so every third sure I’d have to get up and physically change the DVD now as you’re saying it just rolls on so it takes out the need for me to expend any energy to Gary Ward basically if I want to go to bed I have to get up turn things off go up clean my teeth bloody bloody blah or I can just sit there and let the episode roll on so it’s really about energy conservation and there are lots of bring science tricks that are being used to make it easier for us to keep watching and to keep engaging and to not get on with the meaningful stuff that we need to do in our life to actually make us feel good about ourselves um I can’t remember the Steiner chapter but things have been a huge increase because I haven’t mechanic books it’s not even a year old yet so all the stats are still very relevant or very recent and I think there was a huge jump wasn’t in the last few years in terms of the consumption of videos online and TV streaming um it’s a seismic jump I think I think it’s up to about six hours per day the last time I looked for the average adult it’s consuming six hours a day of um online uh video which is massive so yeah that’s that’s the brain truth how do we make it is it easy as possible to make you feel good yeah and and what I’d like to ask you about next Jonis I I yeah that’s fascinating to identify that process and I’m sure many people will start now immediately to recognize uh what’s happening to them um what they experience when when they use these Services um and that happens as you described it but to compound matters to make things worse we learn to be Adept at this constant consumption then that’s this this idea of learning unhelpful things yeah so learning is the central pillar four being healthier happier and at our best more often but also for being unhealthier unhappier and that’s our best less less often learning can be used to movers in both directions and that’s the whole point of the learning war is we’re battling to move towards the healthier happier at our best end of the Continuum but silently in the background we’re being conditioned and Hoodwinked into practicing things that make us learn new habits that make it easier for us to be unhealthier and unhappier and at our best less often so that’s the challenge and remember if well if you go into the last episode of chapter five where we really break down learning it goes from knowledge to skill to Habit so learning is the currency of how we build new habits when we talk about this idea of you know we start with

at some point in the not too distant past nobody had any neurons in their brain for the streaming service that they can Now consume because it didn’t exist and then you start to be aware of it and you move that awareness from outside of your head inside you and you start to grow some neurons for that streaming service and then you start to use it and you start to work out how to use it properly how to see your favorite shows how to navigate it to press the play button and then eventually just when you sit down on your couch or wherever you consume this stuff before you know in it before you know it you’re not even doing it very consciously you’re starting to turn on and go to your favorite show and it’s becoming more of a more more and more of a habitual mindless process to the point where we don’t even consider now not watching the next episode it’s just it’s it’s playing before we even considered should we watch it or not it’s already there in front of us so the more we’re practicing engaging in anything that we do the more we’re learning to get better at it and then that learning turns into a habit because we have enough neurons in our brain to habitualize the process so it can just happen almost with no effort yeah it is it is fascinating and alarming and he could Major Jonwhen you describe it like that and uh we mentioned it just briefly before the smartphone also plays a massive role in this we were just talking about it in the context of streaming services but in the book um you cite um another book um by Dr James Williams who’s a I believe a former Google employee um who’s written um his analysis of this situation in terms of the smartphone and he uses the term um the attention economy um and and he he and and you also make this this point and identify this moment in time as it were where the smartphone has become um an attention grabber um it plays a role in this learning War yeah so

many companies that have

again didn’t exist in the not too distant past but now become some of the biggest on the planet they generate their revenue through advertising so social media platforms you use for example the search engines that you use they generate most of their income through advertising so they can sell their ads or their spaces for ads on their platforms if no one’s on the platforms so although the platforms might appear free they’re not because you’re paying with your attention and companies are paying these social media companies and search companies for example to place ads so that they’ve got a better chance of hooking you in to buy their services so that’s what we mean by the attention economy yeah and it said that the most in the most valuable realist there on the planet is actually human eyeballs because our attention is a scarce resource and it can be monetized and if you think about it it’s the first access point into your brain so becoming visually aware of something you know for most for most people on the planet the first interaction they have with anything is they become visually aware of it um even if you hear about something on the radio Podcast you’re going to go check it out with your eye with your eyes you know again if you if you can if you have a site but you know most people on the planet do so the attention economy is real it’s here the

the consequences are

very damaging because our ape brain and our Hue has a preference for paying attention to things that are not always that helpful for being healthy happy and at our best more often we get hooked into these variable reward systems um and we’re being tricked all the time to get addicted and when I say addiction I mean that you’re doing something that you know isn’t helpful for you you know it’s not helpful for your health your happiness your performance but you keep doing it anyway that means you’re addicted to it there’s loads of tricks being used a lot of times to addict to to um paying attention to and practice and engaging in things that are not helpful so we see the red dots for example on um on your phone on the app um button icon on the phone but you’re even now see in the web browser the Little Red Dot on the social media app because we’re conditioned to associate the color red with danger and importance that’s why that’s there you will see on your phone the little dot dot dot that’s signaling someone’s gonna reply to you so there are all these little tricks that are designed with the brain in mind to hook you in and to make you practice engaging more and more and paying attention more and more to these things

yeah and I think um what’s again just just to I think justify the term War um because because the consequences of this uh are potentially so damaging um The Learning War as you as you title chapter six in the habit mechanic book Jonum we are we’re practicing these things we’re learning to do these things as you say because of the way they’re presented to us and then they become become habits and become um we do them on autopilot and it’s so hard um to to shape these things and and they they I mean people will be familiar with um being in a rut but it is everywhere and in the book you talk about how not just in the digital environment we might be hijacked as it were but the physical environment too it’s an example you cite in terms of supermarkets as well yeah so the products with the best margins that are most seductive to our brains to our airbrain our desire for high calorific food are being deliberately placed in places in supermarkets that make us more susceptible to buying them so you’ll see the Sweet Treats Etc Place towards the tills where your willpower is depleted because you’ve done a big shop or whatever or yeah you’re just more likely to buy them and you do you end up buying them you know this the government was was going to ban in the UK they sort of buy one get one free offers and they’ve decided not to do that which is a crying shame because it’s just gonna make it easier for more people to consume more food that isn’t helpful for them but yeah that you know we’ve got a mental health crisis that’s a habit problem I just saw on the news this weekend about an ADHD Chrysler NHS that’s a habit problem and if it’s a habit problem it means it’s a learning problem it means that people are learning to develop horror Mental Health it means people are learning to develop horror concentration and that’s not people not waking up in the morning going right today I’m going to make it my priority to make my Mental Health Works today I’m going to make it my priority to deplete my working memory capacitor and to develop attentional style an intentional style that’s less helpful for me being able to focus a bit my best when we’re we’re seeing um I think we’ve got two and a half million people in the UK that are signed off sick they’re physically incapacitated all their psychologically incapacitated um although not site that I feel psychologically well enough to go to work their habit problems and therefore there’s a big learning element within that so this is here it’s in the background it’s just we’re not thinking of it like that you know another thing that we’re seeing uh the stakes have been raised for all the time is organization’s abilities to make change we call it change management it’s more important than ever to do but it’s harder than ever to do and I don’t hear people talking about change management within the context of learning and habits yet they are the central components of change management until we understand that we’re not going to be able to build um but we’re not going to be able to make sustainable change happen so we can for example successfully incorporate these new technologies like human-like artificial intelligence into our organizations so it’s everywhere we look in society from your favorite football TEAm if you’re if you’re a Premier League football fan the chances are that your manager’s been sacked so far this season because I think 13 of them have that’s because they’ve not been able to help the players to learn what they need them to learn and habitualize that learning so that they can adopt the style of player that they wanted their TEAm to adopt us probably the reason why they’ve they’ve lost their jobs and no one taught them how to do that so this is so Central to everything that we’re doing but it’s invisible and actually where silently being conditioned to learn things that are making our lives more difficult and it’s not been done accidentally it’s been done very deliberately as people want to monetize our attention what what sort of reactions do you get Jonfrom people obviously you you’ve trained many thousands of people you’ve worked with major businesses um as you as you say and as you point out in the book people will recognize these situations but they they won’t understand the detail of what’s going on as you’ve described it how do people react when you point out what is a well we’ve called it a learning or potentially grave situation

yeah I think he’s on a Continuum you know I’ve I’ve come across plenty of vuca world deniers before in the past certainly before the pandemic where they said the book of world’s a lot of nonsense this idea that rapid change is going to happen is nonsense well it’s not easy clearly because um you know the the rate is accelerating I think it’s scary for people um I think but but the people that want to win they see this is a competitive Advantage so they want to get a hold of it they want to you know they see people organizations see they’re starting to see that that their staff don’t need more sales training they don’t need more traditional coaching they need to build a culture that helps their people to to create sustainable long lasting habits individuals and you know where training a really exciting group of people now to become certified having mechanic coaches who are working across a spectrum of of sectors they’re recognizing that you know the nice coaching conversations don’t cut it anymore we need to actually help people to build sustainable new long-lasting habits so yeah I think it’s it’s challenging for people but it’s understandably so because most of what we’re doing most of the time is Mindless we don’t really think consciously so it’s not obvious to us about the important role that learning and habits have and how we’re being deliberately conditioned to do some really unhelpful stuff um

but yeah that’s that would be my quick reflection on that Andrew yeah no thanks for that Jonum and it is it’s a good time to say that because it is I suppose it nicely brings us to the end of this um analysis and deep dive into chapter six and this is a grave situation but there is some good news because um as you’ve identified we can learn to do things which damages and are unhelpful for us but we can learn to do better um but it’s important to recognize that the ways we’ve been shown to do that um in the past have not always been fit for purpose that’s uh that’s a Central Central Point of chapter seven

yeah so we can learn to do better we can take more control that’s the entire point of the mechanic approach um and I must admit I forget the title of chapter seven just call something like breaking through well I think most significantly Jon it’s how to win the learning War chapter six we identified a learning War chapter seven we’re talking about how how to win it and um yeah I think I think that does provide hope and and great optimism how to win the learning war and break through barriers in your own life yeah and it’s the shortest chapter in the book it’s two pages um but it’s for me the message was distinct enough to have its own chapter um and

there is hope we can do better when we learn how to do more intelligent self-watching and more intelligent planning using the habitat mechanic toolkit the cinema book were able to actually see some of these unhelpful things that we’re learning that we’re being silently conditioned to do and we’re actually able to proactively work against that start establishing new more powerful habits so in simple terms we’re able to notice our destructive habits destroy them and build new super habits that make it easy for us to be healthy happy our best more often but we’re not only able to do that for ourselves we’re also able to do that at a cultural level to build what we call purposeful development cultures which is what I go into in step four of the book in the chief habit mechanics section cultures where it makes it easier for people every day to work on themselves and to learn to do just a little bit better and then a little bit better and then a little bit better and to build the foundational habits that make it easy for us to be healthier happy and at our best more often but also to make the kind of personal progress That’s essential if you want to feel good about ourselves and otherwise that’s the beauty of the mechanic approach even though the books on like it’s less than 12 and sold everything in it has been tried and tested on thousands of people um you know in the last in the last 10 months now I think like when where when we talk about 10 000 people we’ve worked with I think we’re going up to over 20 000 people now because we’ve had we’ve got so much traction from the book in the last 12 months and time and time again on a daily basis people tell me how impactful these ideas are on their lives um so yeah I think we’re a really exciting point where we know what the rules of the game are now and we can start to use the rules to help us to win

um and I can see already habit science making the same seismic impact on people’s well-being performance leadership TEAm performance cultures that for example Sports Science has had on the physical condition of professional athletes over the last 20 20 years or so so habit science is sort of the The Shining Light I think if we want to be healthier happier and our best more often

and I’m not saying it I’m not seeing it described

in that language anywhere else but the Habit mechanic so you know they’re having mechanic approach I just think is it’s not just me saying this it’s the feedback we get every day from people if we understand the rules of the game we can win the game yeah I think it’s really really um beneficial and and appropriate that you you’ve you’ve shared with us some of the progress that’s been reported back to you when people have used your habit mechanic approach that’s uh not only um great to hear but it provides hope because as you do recognize in chapter seven um sometimes when you embark on this journey to change it does feel massively daunting and almost impossible but but you you you talk about people feeling uh on taking more control of their lives and feeling in more control yeah and I think that’s the that that’s the heart of what we’re all trying to do that is the ultimate the ultimate um outcome we’re trying to achieve we’re not that conscious of it but we want to get more control over how we feel we want to feel better and that’s why it’s easier it’s easy for big corpers to trick us into doing things that give us short-term gratification that actually makes us feel much worse about ourselves in the long term um we want to get more control over what other people think about us and that’s why it’s easier for

these social media platforms present their lives in a disingenuous way you know well this is me and my life and actually it’s an edit it’s an edited photo and there’s all sorts of stuff going on social media so that makes you feel worse about your life so we know that if we want to feel happy about ourselves and if we actually want to get more control it’s not just about even into short-term gratification we’ve got to build sustainable new long-lasting habits but also allow us to make personal progress that means to do meaningful work that

yeah allows us to feel good about ourselves yeah and and as as we come to the conclusion of chapter seven you you talk about um how you’re going to take people on this journey of learning how to be better um just I think a point worth making is um in the same way that you’ve shown us that in the attention economy streaming services big Corporate social media smartphones um helpers help us in inverted commas build these unhelpful habits because what they present is brain friendly people should be reassured that the The Habit mechanic book contains a myriad of brain friendly tools and approaches to help them be better as well yeah so the key to doing better is more intelligent self-watching and more planning intelligent planning and that’s what the Habit mechanic tools allow you to do they’ll allow you to do more and tell yourself watching a more intelligent planning so that you can do well you can learn to think and behave in a different way that eventually results in better habits that’s the key so more intelligent self-watching more intelligent planning allow us to practice things in other words to learn and if we keep practicing those things we eventually habitualize them so that we automate them so we’re automating more and more Super habits and that this place are destructive habits yeah sorry JonI perhaps wasn’t clearing what I wanted to to really get at with you is that you’ve very deliberately presented this all all the insights in the habit mechanic book are presented in this way that’s that’s just as digestible um and just as um brain friendly as you put it so so people can can Embrace these approaches in their lives in the same way that these other potentially damaging um phenomena affect them yeah so we’re certainly using the same and I’d say a more comprehensive Behavioral Science systems than these um

damaging forces in the world are using in the tools that we’ve designed and that’s why we’ve very deliberately designed a book and an app that worked together which is unique so that we can harness the power of Technology but also you’ve got the manual here it’s in front of you it’s written down um but we can use some of the reward and penalty type systems social support systems make Knowledge and Skills a bit more accessible and brain friendly in the technology format and you know week by week we’re now going to start to be adding more and more supercharged features into the app that really make it as easy as possible for our brain to develop in a more complex um habits that are really helpful for our health and our happiness and our performance and also not just to do that individually but we can do it collectively as well so yeah we’ve that’s why it’s taken over 20 years to put together because it’s quite complicated to do that but um chapter one two minute daily exercise that will save you here a lot more than two minutes every day I guarantee it at least half an hour uh if if not a lot more so yeah that’s we signal our intent and the Simplicity of our tools from the word going chapter one yeah well thanks very much Jonuh for that overview of all the chapters which we we just had a brief look at at the start of the podcast but but taking us through chapter six and seven of the Habit mechanic um in detail for this podcast um gonna come on to talk about uh something that we’ve we’ve brought up in in the discussion on this episode and specifically change management and and some of the ways you’re seeing that playing out in the modern world of business and in our societies we’ll we’ll get to that in a moment but um and we’ve also just been talking of course about how people can access your insights and the Habit mechanic insights and the training uh you can of course download The Habit mechanic University app from from the App Store as we can see on screen there um but recently you’ve launched a new habit mechanic keynote um your talk 90 minute talk um and I understand you there’s been some interesting developments on that recently yes so we’ve actually been booked with some of the the biggest agencies speaker agencies in the world just last week alongside some of the most famous and High performing people on the planet so that’s really exciting that our work is being held in that high regard yeah thanks for that Jonand um if people want any more information about The Habit mechanic chemo keynote then they can find it of course on the website tougherminds.co.uk there is a video there which shows um some of the insights you share and also some of the previous um speaking that they’ve done as well as feedback from a number of uh Global businesses who’ve already experienced them and I think it’s worth just pointing out briefly that you’re the keynote does equip people with these the science-based practical skills we’ve been talking about in this podcast and subsequent and previous podcasts so that they can feel better do better and and be at the best they won’t be overwhelmed with loads of unhelpful and practical information it certainly won’t be boring having having been in in your Keynotes I know they’re highly engaging now of course people do have the opportunity as well to get a copy of the Habit mechanic book um they they will feel um they have a great Pathway to begin using your proprietary habit metrics tools that you’ve talked about on the podcasts and identify destructive habits and super habits so they can start to to feel better and do better you share uh 30 plus habit mechanic tools in the keynote and um as you say um it’s fantastic that you’ve had this approach from a number of uh speaker bureaus and speaker representation agencies who who um have a very high profile client base themselves and um people can of course if they want to approach you directly to book a keynote by the website Jonyeah if you want to book a keynote just get in touch and we can have a conversation yeah tougherminds.co.uk is the place to go thanks for that Jonand we’ll uh look forward to hearing more about that in in due course I’m sure um I wanted to talk now about something we’ve touched on in our discussions around chapter six and seven and and something you talk about very often as well um in your training and on podcasts and in interviews you give and that’s change management and and the way learning as we’ve been discussing it has a has a massive and pivotal connection to that please please expand on that if you would yeah and actually we’ve used in the past that it might we might use this expression in the book I can’t remember um but we’ve used the term personal change management but the only constant in the modern vuca post pandemic world is change and therefore our organizations have to keep tweaking and refining the way that they do things sometimes more than tweaking we find it sometimes making big changes to where they do things in order to beat the competition sir they need to make changes so that they can keep optimizing their approaches to delighting their customers and the big new story on that front in the last few weeks and it will continue to be a big new story is the role of human-like artificial intelligence which we took a deeper dive into in the last podcast yeah that that the chat GPT um chat botton and I think I think Google’s got a rival um as well that’s been recently released and there’s been a great deal of news coverage of these things and um there was a report um which which analyzed the potential seismic impact where do you use a lot seismic on on the workplace around the world um and it’s so important that people are equipped to not only just deal with these new phenomena the these these um new trends and and and the way it will change the way they work and live but they also can help others and as you say build a culture that can adapt uh and succeed in these contexts yeah so

what the successfully incorporate in human-like artificial artificial intelligence into the organisation we need to help people to learn how to do even more of the kind of work that artificial intelligence can’t do or to learn to be more efficient and effective in doing the type of work that the artificial intelligence can’t so the way that we think about this and we talk about this in chapter 25 of the book is that we can separate the jobs that we do at work into two broad categories one is freezing ice cubes that’s busy mindless habitual work that artificial intelligence is increasingly getting good at doing and the other type of work we can do is building ice sculptures so that’s um focused clever

um or am I sometimes called creative Innovative high impact work that artificial intelligence can can do so well so actually what we need is to work out how do we optimize how the artificial intelligence can help us to freeze our ice cubes more more quickly and free up our people resources our humans to do more of the ice sculpture building work but in order to do that people need to learn how to build more habits that allow them to do more ice sculpture building work more consistently that starts with learning how to build better for example sleep habits and diet habits and exercise habits so you can get your brain working well building better habits around how you focus and how you manage what we call your activation levels and how you manage your stress as well so what what [Music] um organizations can do is if they understand that that’s they’re the new rules of the game is they can create cultures what we call them purposeful development cultures that make it much easier for people to develop these ice sculpture building habits so that they can be more um efficient and effective with with how the people can be more efficient and effective with how they use their their time to do high impact work so that’s the way that I’m seeing things shaping up but at the heart of all that is learning so when we you know change management we’ve traditionally thought about bringing a new it system or something like that but we need to get much better at using Avid science within how we how we make change in organizations and excitingly that’s the work that that we’re that we’re doing with our clients we’re helping their people to ultimately build more ice sculptures and then very quickly we know that by doing that we can help to improve the performance of any TEAm by over 25 very quickly which you probably think that’s ridiculous Jonwe can’t do that I guarantee you can when you implement this science um it’s so powerful yeah and the metaphor you use of creating an ice sculpture I.E complex challenging work I think is is incredibly useful what’s equally um I think useful Jonand if he could just talk to us about this it’d be great in in terms of people approaching a change challenge if you like and overcoming it and successfully navigating it is just to drill down into a microcosm of it there’s far more to it of course but this idea of the brain being in only capable of this this complex challenging work for a short period each day yeah so we have the model called the brain stats model we talk about brain optimization as one of our non-action factors in chapter 18 which is the our systematic proprietary Behavioral Science model that threads throughout our um that mechanic approach so the brain the brain States model talks about the brain being like a battery and it has three operating States one is recharged one is medium charged one is high charge and we’re going to use all three of those brain strikes in a 24-hour period but there’s an optimal way in which we can use them um and it’s a bit like a pyramid recharge sits at the bottom then we’ve got Medium charge and then we’ve got high charge right at the top so the high charge brain is our most scarce cognitive resource and for me personally but I see this people reporting this in you know as well is that you can only do about four to five hours of high charge work each day um and you’re probably gonna have to have a day off in every in every seven of not doing any High charge work you know to recover so for me the the rules of the game are really all about they all Center on how can I consistently every work day do four to five hours of high charge clever high impact work

um and it’s interesting just as a as an example case that the story that I heard of um a company that has they have someone that writes blogs for them and they’ve started to use this um I think they’ve used the chat GPT tool to supercharge or to work alongside this blogger if you like previously without that tool the Blogger could write one blog per day it was us

all they were capable of doing in a in a normal working day now they’re actually able to write three blogs per day using this new technology to actually they they’re using the way I would describe it they’re using the chatbot to do more of the Ice Cube freezing work which makes it easier for the human to do the ice sculpture building work because that’s all they have to prioritize so in this case the chat GPT block will literally write the first draft of a Blog and then the human goes in and does the clever ice sculpting work but they can do three of those a day so already I’m talking about 25 Improvement across the TEAm that one individual is already improving their performance their output by 200 that’s one person seismic yeah it certainly is and and um when when you realize how this insight into um brain States alone can be so helpful for that in other words you would suggest that they perhaps set the chat bot going to create the blogs as part of this that they’re more habitual work and then prioritize the refining of the blog into the ice sculpture period the high charge the high charge period just to give it just to give a a specific example of how that might fit into a working day for a someone tasked with a specific role yeah and um there was another story wasn’t there about

um a young lady from York I think in the north of England um a beautiful place if you haven’t visited it um who who who got all who got a rebate on a 60 pound parking fine by submitting a letter that she got chat GPT to write for her so the robot wrote a letter that meant the Judge Joe whoever makes that decision relinquished the 60 pound fine and that the report you referred to earlier said that just in Europe alone um this human mic artificial intelligence has gonna significantly impact in Europe alone 300 million jobs and that one example of a 60 pound parking fine that that that’s you would normally ask a solicitor to write that for you that’s going to be the one of the biggest sectors impacted because we don’t need humans to do the Ice Cube freezing job working immoral you know re regurgitate a contract for us with a few refinements we can get the artificial intelligence to do a lot of that work for us and we can leave the humans to actually do the more clever complex work that AI currently can’t do so this is gonna be huge yeah and I know I know you’ve worked successfully already with with businesses on change management um just just briefly um obviously that people can access your programs what is the starting point then when you are trying to to take businesses on that journey of of successfully approaching change management we need to understand what their mission is first of all and what their strategy is and we sometimes help them to create a more well we always help them to create a more what we call habit Focus strategy so that habits are at the heart of the Strategic approach then you know what are the priorities how does that they still down into people’s roles and responsibilities but then we’ve got to help the individuals to learn the new knowledge and the skills around how their brain works and around how to build better habits but essentially so if you look at chapter 35 of the book which is our culture development to we’re helping the business to get all the nine action factors working for them the factors actually drive learning and behavior so that their people have got a better chance of building the habits that allow them to be at their best but it’s always you know the the core outcome they will use this brain power to do different things but the core outcome of those change management programs is always the same it’s about how can we help our people to build more ice sculptures every day now sometimes those ice sculptures might be directed towards selling more products you know doing all the things that you need to do in order to do that sometimes the ice sculptures might be direct directed on creating new new products sometimes it might be on you know doing better marketing but whatever it is it’s about how do we how can we actually help our people to move away from doing busy mindless habitual work that we can now automate more of that and how do we help them to actually get their brains working really well so that they can do more um ice sculpture building work and that is ultimately underpinned by a set of habits yeah and the the metaphor uh which you use of ice sculpture and ice cubes is uh is incredibly useful and and people can can really get to grips with it and and um understand it’s it’s true application um in the habit mechanic book and it is so useful and and so fascinating uh well Jonthanks so much for for today taking us through that chapter six and seven of course whether the core of the podcast of the Habit mechanic book and uh yeah a fascinating um look at change management as we’re seeing it play out in our modern society and I’m sure we’ll keep further tabs on the the progress or otherwise of these new tech Trends including chat GPT um great also that you’ve had that good news on on the Keynotes remember people can find out more about the Habit mechanic keynote which you offer on the website tougherminds.co.uk and um the new leadership one-to-one coaching that you’re off ring which recently launched and it dropped into inboxes in recent days but again tougherminds.co.uk um there’s a great video you can watch about that on the website too so I would certainly encourage people to go there um great to talk once again Jonum thanks for another fascinating podcast uh anything you’d like to say in closing yeah I actually want to remind people so there’s such a rich set of insights we’ve now gotten these the podcasts that we’ve been creating in conjunction with the book and there’s actually a podcast which I think is from the second week of January um 2023 where I share chapter 17 of the book that allows you to access the Habit metric tools so if you want to learn more about your own habits and start Identify some of the ones that are destructive for you but also some habits that are and could be your super habits just just listen to that podcast take the assessments also in having mechanic University app um you can listen to the entire audio book for free if you like what you hear if you like what you’re reading please like subscribe to the podcast leave us a review um on on the platform you bought the book from We’re actually just going to launch our 250 review campaign as we as we move towards the one year anniversary of the book we’re looking to get up to 250 reviews we’re nearly there so if you like what you’ve read tell other people about it and help other people to be at their best because the more people we can get using these approaches the healthier happier and at their best more and more people are going to be which is only a good thing now remember I know building new habits is not straightforward it’s complex it’s a journey but time and time again I’ve said this and I’ve seen it you’re only ever one habit away.

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