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  • Toby Sinclair

Curated Insights | Friday 2nd April 2021

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Happy Friday,

This weeks insights include:

  • How Keystone Habits Help You 🧱

  • Perceptual Positions and the Suez Canal Ship 🚢

  • April Goal Setting Exercise 🎯

With Gratitude,



How Keystone Habits Help You 🧱

This week I re-read Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg. The book is most famous for the habit loop: Cue, Routine, Reward.

What I most enjoy in this book is the focus on keystone habits. These are habits that strengthen other habits. Exercise is the most common keystone habit. If you exercise it will positively affect other habits.

Three keystone habits I've developed are:

  • No electronic devices after 8 pm

  • Exercise every morning at 7:45 am

  • No alcohol during weekdays

“If you focus on changing or cultivating keystone habits, you can cause widespread shifts. However, identifying keystone habits is tricky. To find them, you have to know where to look. Detecting keystone habits means searching out certain characteristics. Keystone habits offer what is known within academic literature as “small wins.” They help other habits to flourish by creating new structures, and they establish cultures where change becomes contagious."

Keystone habits can also be applied to organisations. Alcoa CEO Paul O’Neill focused on Safety as a Keystone Habit. This dramatically improved the performance of the organisation in many areas. I expand upon that case study here and how you can apply it in your organisation.


Perceptual Positions and the Suez Canal Ship 🚢

I'm sure everyone has seen Suez Canal memes going viral across the internet. I particularly enjoyed this one from Brene Brown.

These memes highlight the power of metaphor. When presented with random objects people can tell stories about things in their own life.

You might be surprised to learn that you can use the Suez Canal Image as a coaching prompt.

Perceptual Positions is an exercise where you explore a situation from different perspectives.

This image perfectly represents three different positions.

Here is the script I'd use:

Looking at this image, think about a situation in your life and what each of the positions in the image represents:

  • The ship

  • The digger

  • The person behind the camera.

Through the conversation, explore how the person thinks, feels from these different perspectives.


April Goal Setting Exercise 🎯

Here are 3 questions to help you reflect on your goals for this month.

For each goal:

  • How have you behaved in the past towards goals like this?

  • How likely is it that you'll behave the same this time?

  • Will that behaviour result in a good or bad outcome for you?

If you'd like to change the outcome:

  • What can you do to make it easier to behave in a way that contributes towards your goal?

  • What can you do to make it harder to behave the same as you have in the past?

These questions are influenced by Conditions Consequence Thinking.


Quote of the week

"I will be found on the edge of the world Where there'll be no one around"

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