“All our life, so far as it has definite form, is but a mass of habits.” - Psychologist William James

This seminar is all about putting routines in place that enable great educational outcomes as a byproduct of consistent positive behaviour.

What exactly are habits? Habits are the subconscious actions that control our behaviour. According to research more than 40% of daily actions aren’t based on conscious decisions but habits.1 The human brain is designed to look for regular actions to automate in order to free up brain power. Driving is a great example - most experienced drivers do not exert much brain power driving a regular route whereas a new driver is very conscious of every action they make. But what does this mean for your students?

Forming positive habits can have two enormous benefits for your students. The first is the ability to bypass the need for self-control to act. A student who has no fixed study routine needs to exert willpower every time she sits down to study. She needs to battle her feelings and resist all the other more tempting options available to her. On the other hand, a student who has built the habit of studying every week day evening between 5pm and 7pm does not need to exert willpower because the act has become a routine and choice is eliminated. Habits are so effective because they reduce the variability of behaviour.

The second powerful impact of habits lies in their compounded benefit over time. A student wishing to improve her maths grade may establish the habit of doing just five extra maths practice questions a day. Over six months she is able to do 900 extra practice questions, resulting in a profound leap in her maths ability.

But how are habits established? Why do most people give up on their new habits after a few days or weeks? In this seminar we delve into the science of establishing habits that stick with your students. The aim of this seminar is simple: to help your students achieve much more through consistency of action.

Habits (45 min-1 hour)

In this seminar your students will learn:

  • 1

    The science of habits: what habits are and why we need them.

  • 2

    How habits control much of their actions.

  • 3

    How to become more aware of their subconscious behavior.

  • 4

    How utilizing habits bypasses their need to exert willpower.

  • 5

    The incredible aggregated effect of habits over time.

  • 6

    The science of how to establish habits that stick.

  • 7

    Why most people give up a new habit after a few days and how they can avoid it.

  • 8

    How to transform unproductive habits into productive ones.


1. Bas Verplanken and Wendy Wood, “Interventions to Break and Create Consumer Habits,” Journal of Public Policy and Marketing 25, no. 1 (2006): 90–103; David T. Neal, Wendy Wood, and Jeffrey M. Quinn, “Habits—A Repeat Performance,” Current Directions in Psychological Science 15, no. 4 (2006): 198–202.