Hipster Habit App

I collaborated with Buster Benson to create this mini book about how to change a habit. After working together at Habit Labs designing apps like Budge, we challenged ourselves to distill all our knowledge about how to change yourself into one page. I illustrated the result of our thinking, and designed and implemented the website for it.

Lifehacker wrote an article about it: Hipster Habit App Is a Pocketable, Printable Mini-Book Designed to Help You Create or Remove Habits in 30 Days, among other press.

The PDF has was downloaded over 20,000 times.

The paper 'app' is a tongue in cheek reference to the Getting Things Done "Hipster PDA" and can be folded from one printed sheet of paper, like so.

How it works

Here are some thoughts on the behavior change lessons that Buster and I drew upon to create the book.

Start by getting clarity about what you really want

Start by filing in the blank. I am desperate for more ____________ in my life. Chill time? Sleep? Fun, muscles, romance, good looks, clarity, productivity? How about dolla bills, friendship, mindfulness? What feeling you are going after? What are you really needing in your life right now?

Figure out something small you can do every day

Now that you have some clarity on what you want, what's one thing you can do every day that will take you a tiny step closer to having that desired thing in your life? Something small - you're going to be doing it every day, so we recommend it takes 2 minutes.

Next, don't do your new thing for a week. Just answer one question a day and make sure you've really picked the right thing, and have a plan to overcome obstacles.

Put in place things to remind you to restart

A checklist for getting ready. Something to remind you daily. Something to remind you to restart at monthly intervals, if you get sidetracked. A little public commitment. And make sure you are actually excited about this. If you're not, do something else

Cumulative effort is more important than streaks

Now start doing it. Fill in a box each day you do your action, until you've filled up thirty boxes. It's like a coffee punch card, not a calendar. Just keep going until you've done it thirty times.

Levels Three and Four are all about the slog. Keep going. You are trying to do this thing 90 times total. That's a lot of times.

Luckily, the man on the mountain will guide you.

2012