How to Create Positive Habits That Stick

Have you ever wished you could get your day off to a better start? Or that you could actually get to bed on time without getting hooked into staring at Facebook for two hours?

If so, I get it. And I want to share something that could really change everything for you.

The idea is based on creating morning and evening routines using something called habit stacking.

What is Habit Stacking?

Habit stacking is when you take a current habitual action and add a new, desired habit to it. You add the new habit either just before or just after your existing action. You can even add more than one new habit, and create an entire routine.

Here’s a great example. Let’s say your current habit is to wake up in the morning and immediately get a cup of coffee. You want to add a meditation or prayer habit to your morning. So to habit stack, you decide that immediately after you get your coffee, you will sit down and meditate for 10 minutes.

zona-garrett-how-to-create-new-positive-habits-that-stickBecause you’ve connected your new habit to an existing, hardwired action that’s already in your brain, it will make it much easier to add your new habit. It’s like having a shortcut already built in!

You can add any number of small habits to your “stack”, but keep in mind that the more you add the harder it will be to get them all accomplished. Not only are there more opportunities to be distracted, but the power of your initial ingrained habit diminishes as you get further past it in your morning.

You can work small, positive changes into your life with minimal resistance. And small changes add up quickly!!

If you’re like me, this is very exciting to you and you immediately want to start creating six new stacks in your life. Unfortunately, this isn’t setting you up for success. Instead, start with just one. Here are two ideas:

Existing morning habit: Get up and get coffee

Additional habit 1: Meditate or pray 10 minutes

Additional habit 2: Think of one thing you’re grateful for

Additional habit 3: Read one chapter of a devotional or motivational book

Those four habits together constitute one “stack”. You should be able to complete the stack in 30 minutes or less, making it easy to add to your day.

Additional Habit 1: Tidy one messy “hot spot”

Existing Evening Habit: Brush teeth right before bed

Additional Habit 2: Lay out clothes for the next day

Additional Habit 3: Pray or meditate for 10 minutes

With this evening routine, you’ve stacked one habit before your existing action of brushing your teeth, and two afterward. This also creates a great stack. Again, the whole routine should take 30 minutes or less. Wouldn’t you sleep better if you did this routine every night?

As you can see, it’s very easy to pick an existing habit and stack 1 – 3 new habits you’d like to add.  Begin with one new stack per month.  Just think of how much your life can positively change by the end of 2017. You won’t even recognize yourself at this time next year!

Originally printed in Real Deal Magazine

If you are tired of doing the same activities and hoping this year is different. Then join Nisla and I for the Habit of Success in Business. Also, when you sign up you will get an extra special video on competition never before released publicly!

The Power of Persistence

The Power of Persistence

The Power of Persistence: What’s the key to success as an entrepreneur?


Is it skill?






No, it’s something absolutely anyone can develop. It’s the power of persistence.


Mental Toughness and Success

What makes military cadets at West Point successful?


Research shows that intelligence, talent, test scores, and even physical strength have far less to do with success than simple grit. Grit, or perseverance and passion for long-term goals, was the key indicator of whether new cadets would successfully finish their first summer of training.


Angela Duckworth, who did the research on grit in West Point cadets, found similar results in other areas. She found that new teachers in tough neighborhoods, kids in the National Spelling Bee, salespeople, and more were far more likely to succeed if they scored highly for grit.


How Do You Develop Persistence?

If perseverance and passion for your goals are so essential for your success, how do you get there? How do you develop grit in your own life?


Here are some keys:

  • Be That Person. What you tell yourself about who you are will have a lot to do with whether you stick with your goals when they are tough. Be the kind of person that doesn’t quit.
  • Be Consistent. It’s not usually the big actions that help you win, but the small actions are done over and over. It’s the classic tortoise and hare – and the tortoise really does win.
  • Embrace Failure. Seeing failure as a data point instead of a defining moment is a big part of a growth mindset. Refuse to be afraid of failure.
  • One More Step. Choosing to take just one more step than is comfortable helps you create small wins, and helps you become a person that is persistent and has mental toughness.
  • Use Habits. Create habits that help you reach your goals so that you’re not starting from scratch every day.


It’s not easy to do these things on your own. Most people live in their comfort zone unless someone helps them move out of it.


Remember, this isn’t about climbing Mt. Everest tomorrow. It’s about becoming the kind of person who persists and is passionate about their goals. The kind of person who doesn’t fear failure and is consistent in their actions. The kind of person who goes all in


Because you deserve to have complete control over your time and money, I’ve helped many clients develop grit through my Failure Challenge and coaching programs.

Comment one action you are going to take to further your success today.

Are you Busy But Broke?

Are you Busy But Broke?

Being busy is no excuse to be broke! Everyone knows someone who is always busy but never has any money. Has anyone stopped to ask why?

Why are you broke all the time? It is easy to stay busy with tasks that never affect your bank account. I see this all the time as a Coach. People come in with a list a mile long of tasks that they are working on or have finished and they are so proud of everything on the list, but none of it makes money!

We are going to find 3 ways to know if you have busy but broke syndrome. Then we are going to look at 3 busy but broke breakthroughs.

How Do You Know if You have the “Busy but Broke” Syndrome?

1. Does your bank account reflect a balance on par with the hours you are working?

Since my business is a success-based business most of my clients are excellent planners. One trait planners have is that they try and anticipate and structure their entire business, often spending more time in planning than executing money-making activities.

Some of my clients rearrange and re-plan their schedule because they feel they will have control over all of the details if they are safely in a plan. But if you’ve ever worked with people or technology you know life isn’t like that – some things will just take longer.

If you plan 10 minutes to check your email, it never fails: that’s the day you received 100 new emails to which you need to respond. Now you spend the rest of the day in catch up mode with tasks of low priority so that you can feel like you are accomplishing your to-do list.

This structure looks very important to you, but really it is masking the real things that are stealing your productivity.

2. Do you find yourself searching for every guru’s top tips for productivity?

Every guru has a different but equally awesome way they got to the top – because it fit them. If you spend all of your time reading the latest tips from the latest guru and then re-planning your life around their ideas, you’ll be chasing your tail.

It’s fine to get new ideas, but if you never stick with it long enough to see if anything comes from it, you will simply be busy but broke!

3 Are you always stressed and behind, running from one task to the next without completing anything or making money?

This is also very common. Many people do not have a great way to separate priority in their business put everything in the same box marked “urgent”.

Sometimes this looks like procrastination. Chances are if there is something you are procrastinating you need to look at your mindset around the task, but that’s a topic for another day.

This can also look like Attention Deficit Disorder. If you have A.D.D. you understand the extra time it takes to process your life. Unfortunately, a lot of people claim to struggle with ADD but truthfully they are just poor time managers.

I followed one client through their morning and this is what it looked like for this work at home mom: Boot up computer, remember needing to unload the dishwasher. Unloaded top rack of dishwasher and remembered she needed to return a client email from the previous day. Opened email and noticed a refund not issued properly for a separate client, called to resolve bank issue. Remembered needed to post on social media account and picked up her phone. A friend called and she spoke with that friend for a while. While on the phone realized she needed a specific outfit for the next day and began a load of laundry, then proceeded to put laundry away. While putting laundry away she stepped on the infamous LEGO and set her little one to cleaning his room. While he was cleaning he decided he was hungry so Mom went down to make lunch where she had an email waiting for her from the client from the previous day.

Her morning was running from one crisis to another.

I had her sit down with a Post-It note and every time an item popped into her head she wrote it down. She came up with 32 other items she needed to complete right now. 32! And the one deadline she had that day that was non-negotiable wasn’t even on the list. At the end of her morning, she was busy but hadn’t gotten anything real done.

Now: 3 ways to break the cycle of Busy but Broke!

1. Like the stay-at-home mom I observed, I’d like you to go get a Post-It note pad. Go ahead and create two Post-It notes: one titled “Due Today” and one titled “Do When Time Allows.

As you go about your work, write down each distraction or the new idea on one of the two notes. Only allow tasks or expectations with looming deadlines to make it to the shortlist for today.

Guard this closely! If you need help saying “No”, read my recent post here then come back.

2. If you’re an expert on every guru’s advice ever written, pick one tip and implement only that one! Do it consistently for a period of time.

To know if something is productive you have to be able to isolate the data based on one change. That means you have to stick with it! I mean it too. It takes 21 days to make a habit and you should allow a reasonable amount of time to pass to know if the tip is working.

Hint: It might take longer than 21 days.

Do not change something that was working for you because you now want to achieve the same goal just like your new mentor did for their success. Your success is your journey, not theirs!

I see this all the time as well, clients who read a new book and feel they need to adjust their business plan to this style of leadership, business or success. All depending on the book’s focus, and they can lose hours or even days adjusting and editing what is already working.  Take note if you see yourself doing this!

Often we fix what we feel is easy to adjust, like our schedules in order to avoid changing what is harder to change, like a habit, mindset, or limitation.

One of the ways I help clients overcome this exactly is through mastermind groups. Having someone else who sees your business activity and overcomes the areas in your blindspot. Read more about Masterminds here! Do not waste 5 years going in circles when you could be part of a group that builds you and keeps you accountable to your greatness!

3. This is the most brutal but the most effective tip, and the shortest. Do what makes you money first then fill in the rest of your schedule.

If you’re struggling with being busy but broke, you’re not alone! I see it all the time in my coaching practice. Fortunately, there are actionable ways to solve the problem.

Know yourself. If you like to follow everyone’s advice limit the amount of advice you are ingesting. Make sure you are being strategic that the advice you are following is aligned with where your business is headed and it makes you money. Do not take your advice from broke and busted individuals.

Seek out situations where you have authentic, transparent relationships with other business people who are committed to growing their business and making money. If you are leaving excuses and time wasters behind get involved with a mastermind group to amplify your growth.

We have Masterminds starting soon. Email for more information!




Five Reasons to Join a Mastermind Group in 2017.

Five Reasons to Join a Mastermind Group in 2017.

Five Reasons to Join a Mastermind Group in 2017


If you’ve never heard of a mastermind group, you may wonder what it is. It sounds like a meeting of evil overlords, doesn’t it? Fortunately, that’s far from the reality.


A mastermind group is simply a group of highly motivated individuals that meet regularly to give each other encouragement and accountability. The phrase “mastermind group” was first coined 75 years ago by Napoleon Hill in his book Think and Grow Rich.


Participants in mastermind groups challenge each other to set powerful goals and work toward accomplishing them. If you want to meet and exceed your goals for 2017, you need to join a mastermind. Here’s why.

You’ll Get New Perspective

One of the greatest things about a mastermind is that everyone comes from a different place. In a really good mastermind, there are motivated people from all walks of life and business who come together to help each other.


As a result, you’ll be able to get a new perspective on your work, goals, and ambitions. People who are looking at things from the outside will help you stay balanced, encouraged, and inspired.

It’s an Exclusive Community

One of the great things about a mastermind group is that not anyone can join at any time. You usually have to be invited or apply. As a result, the people in the group are committed, and you can generally trust that what happens in the group will be confidential.


This exclusive community aspect ensures that you are working with the best of the best and that you don’t have to weed through the nonsense to get the help you need. The other members need you and you need them – everyone is committed to a great experience.

You’re Not Alone

Being in business can be a very lonely venture, especially if your friends and family aren’t supportive. A mastermind group can help end the feeling that you’re in this by yourself and you have to figure everything out.


When your mastermind group includes people at different levels of success or includes people in different forms of business, you can get advice about what works and what doesn’t. This advice can save you not only from frustration and time researching on your own, but it can save the heartache and financial cost of making major mistakes.

Extend Your Network

It’s not what you know; it’s who you know, right? Well, if that’s the case, a mastermind is a vital part of business success. Joining a mastermind group not only expands your network by giving you access to members of the group, it also can give you access to contacts those members have.


If you need trusted advice on a good accountant or who you should hire to do social media consulting, a mastermind group can put you in touch with the right people. At the same time, the people you know and trust become assets to others in the group. A great mastermind will dramatically increase and improve your network.

Accountability to Reach Your Goals

A mastermind group is not for the weak-hearted. If you’re not committed to reaching your goals and being accountable for the steps you take, don’t join a mastermind! However, if you are on fire to reach the next level and need accountability, a mastermind group is perfect for you.


Often, seeing what others in the group are aiming for and accomplishing will push you higher and help you set bigger goals that you would have ever thought of. You can lay out a plan of action and count on your mastermind to hold you accountable for those results. Being part of a mastermind can multiply and assure your success.


Being part of a mastermind requires commitment, passion, hard work, and willingness to give and receive. If you don’t have that fire, please don’t join one! But if you do, you must be part of a mastermind group in 2017. Your success could depend on it.


For more information about masterminds and how they benefit you, contact me at I’d be happy to help you find your fit!