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Design your environment, or else…

[2 Min Read] Achieving your goals becomes so much harder when you don’t put any thought into what kind of environment you design around yourself.

Elan and Eric are working toward writing a daily email containing short insightful tips and ideas around living a healthy lifestyle. Subscribe here.

Achieving your goals becomes so much harder when you don’t put any thought into what kind of environment you design around yourself.

To illustrate the importance, who do you think is more likely to become a smoker?

  • A child who grows up in a household full of smokers?
  • A child who grows up in a house where no one smokes?

Sure, there are exceptions, but research suggests that children who grow up with parents that smoke are at least 2 times more likely to become smokers themselves.

It’s important to note that this is not about willpower. Those kids aren’t weak. They don’t have bad genetics or rotten luck. They’re not less talented or lacking enough motivation.

It’s the design of their environment. Smoking for them is hard to avoid. It’s part of their daily norm.

Your environment design (or lack of) affects you every minute of every day.

One of the worst environment designs that most people have is their kitchen.

You are more likely to eat whatever food is around you. Good or bad.

  • If you choose to keep lots of junk food around… you are more likely to eat it.
  • If you choose to keep lots of healthy food around… you are more likely to eat it.

As much as people love to complain about their bad genetics, lack of willpower, or need for motivation… Most of the time it’s actually their poor environment design that is setting them up for failure.

Environment design is all about “Work once, benefit forever”.

If you can spend 5 minutes designing your environment, it means you can then use less willpower from there on out.

  • You should be trying to make the GOOD stuff in life (like healthy food, gym equipment, educational books, etc) MORE noticeable, visible, accessible, and convenient.
  • Likewise, you should be trying to make the NOT-SO-GOOD stuff in life (like junk food, social media, television shows, etc) LESS noticeable, visible, accessible, and convenient.

Maybe this weekend is a good time to do a Kitchen Makeover? If so, check out the free Sleekgeek Kitchen Makeover Guide which is all about environment design.

Or maybe it’s a good time to remove some toxic Facebook (or real life) friends and reconnect with the ones who inspire you to be better? Or maybe it’s a good time to cancel Netflix for a bit and stock up on some interesting books?

Just know that the environments you design around yourself can make this journey easier or harder by default.

It’s up to you to decide which.

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