Camille Styles

Life Lessons

9 Habits That Will Make You Smarter

June 17th, 2016

“Motivation is what gets you started, but habits are what keep you going.” My mother hit me with this pointer on the phone last week during our regular call on my commute to work, proving yet again that moms really do know best. That catchphrase stuck with me throughout my day, leading me to consider my own habits and how they’ve played a role in my personal and professional life. It comes to this: The biggest misconception about success is that what you did yesterday will help you succeed tomorrow. We need a solid foundation to improve, but to truly become the best version of yourself, you need to keep innovating. It’s a bit of catch-22 — habits give you direction, but when routines become habitual? Not always a great thing. The key to propelling forward is to continue learning, exploring, experimenting, and, you know, letting your brain just think. Freely without constraints. Push yourself by developing these nine simple habits that don’t feel habitual at all.

Lauren McGoodwin is the Founder of Career Contessa, an online career development and mentorship platform for women. Through expert career advice, one-on-one career counseling, online workshops, and job listings, Career Contessa gives you the resources to find a job you love—and be successful in it.

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  1. Love this post! I just started a bullet journal and love it! Great way to track not only my thoughts and ideas, but also helps keeping track of what I have done and need to do.

  2. Laura Mareno says:

    I love doing Zumba! It’s so much fun! love this post! kisses:D

  3. Diana says:

    The best thing I’ve discovered recently are podcasts! I love listening to them when I’m getting ready in the morning 🙂

    Diana |

  4. Klaudia says:

    Thank you so much for Skillshare! I have never heard about this website. This website is very, very useful. 😉
    Sorry for my English. 🙂

  5. susan says:

    I love these ideas! Sometimes doing nothing is just what I need….usually involves reading a good book.

  6. jayhazelwood says:

    Unrelated but I love your opt-in popup. I love the “are you on the list” concept. Great work on that, nice take on the opt-in.

    • Jennifer Rose Smith says:

      Thanks, Jay! I designed it. We hope you will sign up for our newsletter — it only comes once a month and we work hard to make it really juicy and fun.

  7. Cinnamon says:

    Doing new things is my goal for this summer because I don’t really like Zumba. I will check out the website for skills, though.

  8. hannah lucy says:

    Loved this, especially the point about learning new things online!

    Hannah | Oh January

  9. Sanchari Das says:

    Will definitely try them all to stick to my goals ..

  10. This was excellent!

  11. I’ve really need to work on three of those: saying no, sleep and doing nothing. I’m booked up for the next couple months, but I’m still squeezing clients into my schedule, especially if they’re friends. I have to convince myself that sleep is not a waste of time. This post helps! Thank you! Doing nothing – can that include cutting my split ends?

  12. Yes – habits are so worth it. A great read is “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business”. The same author has also written a great book on productivity which uses amazing examples and is really motivating. 🙂

    Scandinavian Slow Fashion coming soon to
    Our Conscious Journal at

  13. So nice finding this today, it inspired me to actually pick up my journal and write since i’ve bin neglecting it for the past couple months.

  14. Love that people are finding my advice helpful! Thank you for sharing!

  15. Mary says:

    Podcast and audible books are my to go too before I pick up the phone to call anyone ,except for my mom because moms no matter what are a blessing !

  16. Susan Lund says:

    So, call me slow, but I don’t see the post? I don’t get how this blog is set up. I see post headings and opening paragraphs, and links to everything else, but no way to actually get to the article indicated by the title. Where is it?

  17. Love your list! so helpful but just want to say, don’t stop calling Mom… you don’t know how long she’ll be there and it’s so important

  18. Julie says:

    Great list!! Thanks for the reminder and it’s a coincidence that I am working thru a few of these things. I just signed up for a Saturday class! I chose an app/YouTube HASfit which is great if you like to work out at home on YouTube it’s free! Fits with the financial detox article. Lol! I really enjoy all that you do, sometimes I feel a little old for the posts at 46, but overall it is a good reminder that life coaching is impactful at all stages of life. (I might put that in my new journal!)

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