50 Positive Habits to Transform Your Life by Michael Chapman is a quick and easy to read checklist of things you can add to your day to improve your life by implementing positive thinking and actions. From fitness goals, mental habits, emotions, lifestyle, personal habits and developments, Chapman covers all areas of life. If you need convincing on introducing these habits, Chapman's book has great personal examples of why adding these simple habits has made his life better and what life would be like without them!
DOWNLOAD THE 50 POSITIVE HABITS PDF FOR FREE!
Who is this summary for?
50 Positive Habits to Transform Your Life by Michael Chapman is a quick and easy to read checklist of things you can add to your day to improve your life by implementing positive thinking and actions. From fitness goals, mental habits, emotions, lifestyle, personal habits and developments, Chapman covers all areas of life, therefore, making this book a great read for absolutely anyone.
About the author
Michael Chapman is someone who is clearly passionate about self-improvement. He’s learned from past mistakes and transformed his life into something he’s proud of, and he wants to share his tips with his readers. Dedicated to helping his readers improve themselves, Chapman has also written a book called Self Discipline dedicated to changing your mindset and choosing better goals.
In this summary
In this summary, we’ll briefly summarise each of the 50 habits Chapman recommends. The key topics include fitness habits, mental habits, emotional habits, lifestyle habits, personal habits and developing habits.
FITNESS GOALS & HABITS
Chapman recommends getting up and going for a walk first thing in the morning. Any kind of movement will release endorphins into your body and you’ll feel enegerised and ready to take on the day. If you can’t walk in the morning, make sure you try to fit it in at some point throughout the day. Try your lunch break at work.
”Walking every day improves mood; fact.”
Always be active
We lead really stationary lives these days, tied to our desks, sit in in our cars for lengthy commutes, then we go home to sit on the couch. Chapman emphasises the importance of keeping active throughout the day. Even when your working at your desk, establish regular intervals to get up, walk around the office and do a few stretches. If you’re at home watching TV, consider getting up and moving around in ad breaks. Do a few star jumps or a few flights of stairs.
Walking is great, but Chapman recommends getting in some regular strength training. Exercising big muscle groups such as chest, legs and arms are extremely beneficial for your overall health. Start with light weights and build them up as you feel your strength improve.
”It will improve your mood, leaving your body feeling stronger and your mind running much faster.”
Chapman believes that finding a hobby can really improve your life. Pick something that you can regularly work on and see yourself improving. This could be fitness related or not, but ensure that there is a metric you can measure your success on. Seeing yourself make progress will do wonders for your confidence and encourage you to tackle new challenges.
Park at the other end
How often do you find yourself searching for the closest carpark? Chapman recommends that you park as far away as possible from any shops or location you are heading to. And when you head to work, try park a few blocks away. Adding some incidental exercise and a bit of a walk into your day is going to be beneficial for your health and your mood.
Don’t forget to stretch
Implementing a new fitness regime into your life is all good and well, but Chapman wants everyone to remember the importance of stretching. It’s something a lot of us skip because it’s slow, can be boring and can seem unnnecesary. However, it’s been proven that stretching is very important and is a critical part of keeping your body agile and healing from any injuries or pain.
”Get into a better frame of fitness by stretching for 5 minutes’ post-shower or waking.”
If you’re someone who struggles to commit to an exercise regime, consider going a team or finding a buddy. Someone else you can commit to and exercise together. The accountability will help you get up and out of bed each day ready to move your body. You’ll find that your fitness improves quickly when you’re working with friends.
Make exercise fun
Exercise shouldn’t be a chore, and if it is you’re never going to stick to it long term. Figure out what aspects of fitness you love and do that. If going to the gym and lifting weights is boring, then don’t do it, or try making a music playlist that inspires you. If you prefer being outdoors and playing tennis in the sun then make that part of your regular routine. Whatever it is, as long as you’re moving it’s good for you!
Chapman believes that changing the way you view the world can have the most significant impact on your life. Do you currently perceive things in a negative way, always looking for the downside? It’s time to make a mental shift and start looking for the positivity and joy in life. In order to change your mental behaviour, Chapman recommends acknowledging when you have a negative viewpoint and instantly trying to shift it. Ask yourself what is good about the situation instead of focusing on the negatives.
Chapman recommends that you spend time thinking about success, visualise what success looks like for you. Being able to think about this and visualise it will help motivate you to do everything in your power to get there. Visualisation is a powerful tool.
”Simply being able to visualize what might be coming in the future is a powerful tool.”
Before you take action, contemplate the possible outcomes. Chapman explains that this will usually lead you to see the good and being more positive overall. If you tend to take action before any consideration, you’re more likely reacting to negative events and the outcome probably won’t benefit you.
We’ve already explained the importance of remaining positive and having a positive outlook on the world, but Chapman believes that it’s just as important to recognise the moments that you are being positive. Recognising this will help increase your overall positivity and encourage you to remain positive more often.
Challenge your assumptions
Assumptions can be dangerous, we’ve all been burned at least once in our life my assuming something that turned out to be wrong. Chapman emphasises the importance of challenging your own assumptions, this will enable you to be constantly learning and adapting. And if you’re wrong, embrace it because you learned something new!
Accept success and failures
You’re never going to succeed 100% of the time, and as humans, it’s easy to dwell on our failures. Instead, Chapman recommends you embrace any success you have, celebrate them and remember them in the times where you feel you are failing. This will help you keep positive, and help you keep improving.
Just as accepting and acknowledging success is important, it’s also important to recognise your failures and review them. Take time to assess what went wrong and why. If you can figure out where the issues arose, you’ll be better prepared for next time and hopefully able to avoid future problems.
Exercising your brain is really important, it helps you keep alert, helps you improve and keeps you young. Chapman recommends regularly playing mind games with yourself. It can be as simple as memorising a short poem. But simple tasks like this will continue to challenge your brain and encourage development.
Force of attraction
Remember to dream. Chapman encourages everyone to spend time wishing and dreaming. Consider what you really want in life and dream about it often. Thinking about something enough will help it happen.
Chapman highly recommends practicing some form of meditation. The best thing about meditation is that there are no rules. You can simply figure out the best way you like to do it, and keep going. He recommends doing it every single day. Meditation can be done for short periods of time like 4-10 minutes, or longer stints of 30+ minutes. You can do it completely unguided, or if you’re just getting started and want some help, you can consider guided meditation. There are plenty of apps out there that can guide you through different meditations.
Breathing is something that we all so so automatically we often give it no thought at all. Chapman believes there is a lot to be gained from learning how to take slower, deeper breaths from time to time. Investigate diaphragmatic breathing and see if you can implement it into your life.
It’s so easy to get overwhelmed with our emotions, Chapman emphasises the importance of recognising and identifying our emotions in a moment to improve our understanding of a situation, and of ourselves. When you are feeling a particularly strong emotion, find 4 or 5 words that describe the way you feel. Figure out what prompted you to feel like that and why. You’ll learn a lot about yourself by doing this regularly.
Often things can seem like an absolute disaster, or something that just came up may present itself as an urgent emergency. Chapman recommends that you need to take the time to put things into perspective, understand the place in the wider world and the broader view of your life. Is it really the end of the world? Or is it just something you would have preferred not to have happened. By doing this you’ll learn and be able to handle situations better.
Sitting in front of a computer screen or with your nose in the same book for hours on end is no good for anyone. You start to lose concentration, focus and your productivity will rapidly decrease. Take 5-minute intervals throughout the day, step away from what you’re doing and take some time to yourself. When you return to the task at hand you’ll feel refreshed and ready to keep going.
We’ve all heard the phrase ‘you are what you eat’. It’s amazing just how true this really is. Chapman emphasises the importance of eating well and food’s relationship with how you feel. Eat plenty of fruit, vegetables, lean protein and complex carbohydrates. If you fuel your body correctly, you’ll feel stronger, happier and your performance at work will improve.
”What we eat determines how we feel, acknowledge anything that makes you feel bad and eliminate!”
How to handle negative emotions
It’s inevitable that we are all going to feel sad every now and again. It’s impossible to be happy all of the time. Chapman explains that whenever you are feeling down, it’s important to remember that these feelings are not permanent. They are fleeting and they will pass. Don’t ignore them, ride them out and you’ll see the light on the other side soon enough.
Chapman emphasises the importance of getting outside in the fresh air as regularly as possible. He encourages every to get out, smell the roses and listen to the birds. Try do this without any distractions such as a mobile phone. Emerge yourself in your surroundings and escape reality for a few minutes.
Understand the values that you hold, these values should shape decisions you make and actions that you take.
”If you start to make decisions based on if it fits our values, you’ll become stronger mentally and more committed to achieving your goals and dreams.”
What's your passion?
Figuring out what your passion is can be really life-changing. If you understand what makes you tick, what motivates you and what you want to keep doing for the rest of your life, you’ll be able to understand yourself a little better. It will also make planning and decision-making easier and more straightforward.
Have a vision
We spoke about the importance of visualisation earlier, Chapman believes that having your own vision, a clear dream is really important. It can be about who you want to be or where you want to be. If you’re looking for some inspiration for your own vision, you can look to other people who you admire, use their success as your vision.
”The most powerful people have a dream, a vision.”
Chapman recommends looking at yourself for inspiration. If you’re feeling stuck or in a rut, look back on times you felt truly successful, the times you achieved something wonderful. Remember what it felt like, and use that to drive you forwards. Make it your mission to get back to the same level of success (if not better).
Just as we should challenge our assumptions, you should challenge your own beliefs. Chapman recommends you play out an argument you expect you would have with someone who has differing beliefs. Do they have a point? Do you still stand by your beliefs? Be constantly questioning yourself in order to allow yourself room to grow.
We all live a life of consumption, we are compelled to buy more and own more. We often wrap our own identities up in the things that we possess. And we are often afraid to lose these things. But the reality is, they are just things. Chapman recommends getting rid of anything that doesn’t bring you joy, asses whether or not you really need something, and if you don’t, eliminate it.
Moving on from the previous point about eliminating your possessions, you can apply this mindset to your life and your day. Do your best to simplify your day in every way possible. Eliminate all mess that is a distraction and counter-productive. Reduce the time you spend doing unnecessary tasks. Make working and living as productively as possible your ultimate goal.
It’s incredibly important to establish some goals. Chapman recommends you start focusing on the hardest and most challenging goals first. You may have a few different goals in different areas of your life, and your instinct may be to tackle the smaller, easier goals. But start with the nitty gritty ones and start making progress. You’ll be grateful later on that you did.
Beginning a project
Having a plan and a goal is one of the best ways to stay motivated. Chapman recommends you continually make plans and set ambitions. Make sure they are something that you can work on regularly and see improvement. Wake up every day ready to work on your plans and don’t stop until they are completed.
Are you productive at work? Chapman encourages everyone to consider how they act at work, do you find yourself complaining or feeling irritated. Look at the source of the irritation, why does it make you feel like that, is there something preventing you from getting on with your work? How can you get around this?
Something a lot of productivity specialists recommend is batching your similar tasks together. You’ll find that batching tasks such as email, will help you get through it quicker, and avoid too many distractions. You’ll fall into a rhythm and be able to get through them quickly.
Establishing your priorities
Chapman highly recommends identifying your priorities in relation to your goals. By understanding your priorities better, it will be clear what you need to do every day. Chapman recommends writing down 3 key priorities at the beginning of every week and making sure that every day these priorities are being addressed.
Wake up early
Another common trend from productive experts is the idea that waking up early in the morning is one of the most productive things you can do. By waking up just 1 hour early, you give yourself an opportunity to do something you otherwise wouldn’t. Ensure you get to be a bit earlier and try waking up earlier every day. You’ll be amazed at what you can achieve.
Learn to say no
It’s really easy to over-commit and find yourself overwhelmed with tasks and events you didn’t really want to do in the first place. Chapman recommends you learn how to feel comfortable declining opportunities and just saying no. Remember, you don’t need a reason or excuse, if it’s something that’s not going to bring you any joy, then feel free to decline. Getting some control back over your life will make you feel happier and freer.
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg is a great read if you want to learn a bit more about habit making. This book not only focuses on work-related habits but also personal habits, therefore it is ideal for anyone who’s interested in making a change in their life whether it be professional or personal. Duhigg examines exactly what a habit is before delving into how we can mould shape and change these habits.
Similarly, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey explores a number of paradigms, principles and habits that can help you become more productive, whether that be as an individual, as part of an organisation or a business.
Guidelines is my eBook that summarises the main lessons from 33 of the best-selling self-help books in one place. It is the ultimate book summary; Available as a 80-page ebook and 115-minute audio book. Guidelines lists 31 rules (or guidelines) that you should follow to improve your productivity, become a better leader, do better in business, improve your health, succeed in life and become a happier person.
- Identify up to 5 habits you want to start doing right away.
- Implement these into your daily life and commit to them for 30 days.
- After the 30 days, assess how you feel? Better?
- If the first 5 were a success, consider implementing a few more at a time.
- Download the complete book on Amazon. If you need convincing on introducing these habits, Chapman's book has great personal examples of why adding these simple habits has made his life better and what life would be like without them!
This summary is not intended as a replacement for the original book and all quotes are credited to the above mentioned author and publisher.