Change Anything | Kerry Patterson

Summary of: Change Anything: The New Science of Personal Success
By: Kerry Patterson


Embark on a journey of personal transformation with the book summary of ‘Change Anything: The New Science of Personal Success’ by Kerry Patterson. Delve deep into the art of mastering change and discover the keys to unlock your own potential with proven techniques backed by social science. Uncover the power of six sources of influence and learn how they can either propel or derail your path to success. This book summary offers a rich understanding of how to crush the setbacks and obstacles in your life and turn them into stepping stones for a brighter future.

Overcoming Phobias

The fear of snakes is one of psychology’s most debilitating phobias that causes instant panic and paralysis in affected individuals. The traditional treatment of Freudian analysis failed for decades to eliminate snake phobia until psychologist Albert Bandura introduced his step-by-step approach called “deliberate practice.” Patients learned to physically control snakes, leading to the elimination of their snake fears in just two hours. This approach can help individuals overcome challenges such as weight loss, career advancement, addiction, and money-saving. By embracing the techniques and skills learned, anyone can become a “changer” and achieve their goals.

The Science of Personal Change

Discovering the science of personal change is your stepping stone to achieving your life-changing goals; willpower is not the key. Professional researchers at Change Anything Labs, a research component of the authors’ company, VitalSmarts, analyzed over 5,000 people who aimed to make significant life changes. Only a few hundred individuals succeeded in reaching their goals and maintaining the transformation for over three years. The researchers analyzed individuals who succeeded and created tenets of “the social science of personal change.” Applying these scientific principles can help you reach your goals.

Beyond Willpower

Many people try to change their lives by relying on willpower alone. However, this is not effective in the long term. Psychologists Bandura and Walter Mischel found that one’s ability to overcome bad habits lies in learned skills and six sources of influence. These sources are often ignored, and people are not even conscious of their impact. For instance, casinos use poker chips instead of money because people have a natural inclination to hold onto money. Additionally, food manufacturers and other industries use manipulative tactics to sway consumer choices. By understanding these forces, individuals can take control of their lives and avoid falling victim to them. Therefore, a focus on learning vital behaviors and harnessing all six sources of influence is crucial for lasting change.

Mastering Personal Change

Harness hidden forces to achieve personal goals by using six sources of influence and customized tactics.

Are you struggling to make a positive change in your life? You might be unaware of what’s hindering your progress. In his book, the author reveals six sources of influence that affect personal change: personal motivation, personal ability, social motivation, social ability, structural motivation, and structural ability. Harnessing these hidden forces can help you achieve your goals.

To improve personal motivation, learn to love what you hate and focus on your goals at pivotal moments. Visualize your future self if you don’t change and use powerful language to describe your desired behavior. Turning your goal into a game with rewards can help you stay motivated, and creating a personal motivation statement can help you stay on track.

Personal ability plays a critical role in overcoming bad habits. Learning new skills and developing a plan to augment willpower can have a positive effect on your life. Social motivation and social ability can also influence your choices. Spend time with positive people and shun those who share your negative habits. Finding coaches and supporters can make the change process easier.

Structural motivation and ability refer to the physical items in your life that can work for or against you. Connecting short-term rewards and punishments to your habits can help incentivize the change process. Breaking down long-term goals into smaller, manageable targets can help you stay focused and make progress. Finally, structural ability involves creating a physical environment that supports your goals. Adding visual cues, constructing fences, and finding alternative routes to avoid temptation can help you stay on track.

Harnessing these six sources of influence can help you overcome obstacles and make lasting change in your life. Don’t let hidden forces work against you; take control and create the life you want.

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