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The Now Habit Book Summary via by Mind Map: The Now Habit
Book Summary
4.8 stars - 17 reviews range from 0 to 5

The Now Habit Book Summary via



Neil Fiore


224 pages


mind map

Luciano Passuello


Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial 3.0

images, Crystal Clear, Everaldo Coelho,

map contains full contents of book, divided by chapters

1. Why We Procrastinate


failure, excuse for less-than-perfect, disappointing performance, having little time, it's not the "real you" being judged, best effort

imperfection, perfectionism

impossible expectations, fear of success, more work!, delayed fear of failure, "ultimate failure", increasing demands, higher chance failure, keep you from doing your best

conflict, unwillingness to choose, popular pressure, jealousy, "You'll have more friends if you don't give them a reason to be jealous."

judgement, threat, sense of self-worth, loving party, parental judge, learned in early life, too young to think, negative pedagogy, low self-esteem, can be unlearned!

procrastination cycle


fear of failure



anxiety and depression

loss of confidence

greater fear of failure

more procrastination



painful work, seek relief, avoidance, more pleasurable activity

work completed by someone else

work becomes unnecessary

problems resolve by themselves

difficult decisions, it will be made for you, no responsibility for it

pressure from authorities, indirect way of resisting, resentment, no-win situation, victim, can't rebel, face consequences, anger, punishment, loose benefits, self-righteousness, martyr-dom, procrastinate!, exercise control

2. How We Procrastinate

what to do

time log, identify patterns, energy levels, events, before procrastination period, work, A, B, C quality

build sense of worth, *the* most important attitude, no book can teach, behavior is everything, fake it 'till you make it, behave like you have, eventually you will have, talk to yourself in positive ways, feedback loop, start, new habits, new behaviors, feedback, higher levels of self-worth

"walk a board" metaphor

Situation A, scenario, 30cm wide, 10m long, in the ground, feelings, OK!

Situation B, scenario, same as A, 30m high, feelings, still simple but, not only a test

Situation C, scenario, same as B, building on fire, feelings, "now it's for real", threat greater than fear of failure, fear of imperfection, goes away, solve the problem, creatively, energy on solution, not on worry, procrastinator pattern, raise the board, perfectionism, associate with the job, self-worth, failure, not just job, but you!, own happiness, get frozen, fear of failure, set fire on building, create threat, bigger than fear of failure, use procrastination!, to increase urgency, move!

Situation D, scenario, same as B, no fire, support net, feelings, OK!, can recover many times, sense of worth, support net

3. How to Talk to Yourself

very important to master it!


Procrastinator's Slogan, 'I have to finish something important and do it perfectly while enduring long periods of isolation from the people and things I love."

Producer's Slogan, 'I choose to start on one small imperfect step knowing I have plenty of time for play."


#1, "I have to...", "I choose to..."

#2, "I must finish", "When can I start?"

#3, "This is so big", "I can take one small step"

#4, "I must be perfect", "I can be human"

#5, "I don't have time to play", "I must take time to play"

"have to"

why it's bad, feelings, stress, victimhood, resistance, confusion, messages, "I don't want to do it", "They're making me do it.", "I have to do it... or else!', no-win situation, don't do, punishment, do, against will, brain energy, task, messages, inner dialogs, vs, authoritarian, rebel, vs, empowered, victimized, parent / child relationship, learned behavior, "discipline", even worse, reinforces, you don't want to do it, conflicting!, energy for task, energy to resist threat to integrity of self, 2 possible responses, stress, burst of excessive energy, "fight or flight", depression, conserve energy for survival

what to do, show, choice, "I choose", determination, "I will"


why it's bad, depression, messages, ideal x bad reality, finished x bad start, admired x bad you, envy, bliss x bad now

what to do, "When can I start?", "What can I do now?", small step, corrective action

the power of choice

parachute story, convert, fear, purpose

say NO, without excuses, no need to prove self-worth

you HAVE choice, visualize not doing, assert it, "I have to go to the dentist", "I am going to the dentist"

4. Guilt-Free Play, Quality Work

"Work hard. Play hard."

put off living

worst form of procrastination

lessen respect, yourself

life all spinach, no dessert


seem as always working

undeserving a rest

life "on hold", sacrificing themselves

view others as lazy

guilty, don't enjoy play fully


recharge batteries, creativity, motivation, energy

less fear of overwhelm, tasks interrupted, friends, exercise, free time, no feeling of task = no play, deprivation, life isolation, pain

breaks and support along the way

seeming paradox, more play, more producing

methods of motivation

"push", threat, action through fear, not directed to goal, escape from fear, used to exercise authority, generates resistance, enforces procrastination!, negative rewards for not doing

"pull", attraction to goals, rewards, more frequent, scheduled, not "someday", more motivation, shorter work periods, less pain, positive rewards for doing


schedule guilt-free play

guilt-free play

sense of freedom

ability to commit and concentrate increases

short period of quality work

sense of self-control

ability to enjoy guilt-free play increases

8. The Procrastinator In Your Life


how to manage procrastinators, no need for pressure, the procrastinator himself is his best dictator, no need for one more, most people are, recognize problems, feeling like victim, commitment, invite, responsibility, action, compliance, requires action, being overwhelmed, focus on, start, be clear on how to start, finish, state priorities, clearly, stick to them!, don't keep changing your mind, otherwise they will procrastinate waiting for next emergency, fear of failure, rewards, fair, frequent, sense of purpose, belonging


don't take it personally

don't do parental talk, no "shoulds" or "have tos", this reinforces authority, "You should put gas in the car, what's wrong with you?", "I would like you to put gas in the car"

treat them as responsible adults, not kids, "I'm leaving at 8.", they can exercise choice if going, not make them feel like victims, of your decision

tell that it's your problem, explain that you're too structured, and that the other has to understand it...

7. Fine-Tuning Your Progress

planned setbacks

rehearse, procrastination

choose to procrastinate, watch it consciously, depression, anxiety, non-use of techniques, then choose it differently!


secret of successful people, fail often, bounce back

take responsibility, correct problems, direct energy, solution, not on blaming initial cause

no perfect paths, finding more problems than expected, doesn't mean you made, wrong choice, mistake, "A mistake won't be the end of the world, because I won't let it be."


3 traits, commitment, control, believe can control events, at least partially, challenge, changes are normal challenges to be "solved"

practicing it, fitness, ex: running, set 10Km as goal, and then run an addition km, set goal, and then do more, not as difficult, you are choosing to do, watching your energy level, not dealing with inner chat on completing the goal, beware inner chat, "I cant' complete this marathon", Identify it and know how to mitigate, focus on what you can do now, run an extra mile, finish marathon slowly, freely choose to do it, it will hurt anyway, so, do the thing that will bring you closer to your goal :), conclusion, focusing on the goal is tiring!, focus on the process!


writing pad, have it ready, write down distractions, as they pop!, deal later, examples, to-do reminders, fantasies, unschedule it later

mental rehearsing and programming

imagine your day, rehearse, realistically

6. Flow State

"perfect mood"

no waiting for it, procrastination

just do it!, allowed by relaxation exercise

Using more of your brain

critic, frustration, temporarily, suppress logical side, supervise, criticize, fix every error

creativity, joy, unlimited, astonishing, work, early pieces disorganized, essential to the process, "The pleasure of creativity is the greatest pleasure in the world" -Sammy Kahn, Academy Award-Winning Songwriter

Focusing Exercise

2 minutes, no separate time, relaxing and "letting go", 1 minute, positive affirmation, 1 minute, when to use, during the day, stressful situation, commuting, before, after

incorporate it, before quality work, good habit, use as a tool, together with how to talk to yourself

record it, until you know it by heart

procedure, breathing (how to), deeply, hold, exhale fully, sit straight, feet on floor, hands on thighs, part I, 1 minute, 1. release tension, 3 slow breaths, count, imagine tension going away, feeling of the chair, float down, release muscle tension, floor/feet, let do muscles, eyelids, float softly over eyes, relax all body, 2. let go past, 3 slow breaths, tasks just past, `, self-image, 3. let go future, 3 slow breaths, deadlines, expectations, 4. center in the present, 3 slow breaths, let go, being, someone else, at any other time, in a particular way, just be, part II, 1 minute, 5. positive suggestion, proper state, link 2 hemispheres, up 1 minute, create custom ones!, suggestions, for confrontations, for creativity, for non-procrastination

5. Tools

reverse calendar

for fear of overwhelm

big task, common mistakes, you see all simultaneously, work, energy required, try to find "right" place to start, there are plenty!, thinking that wrong decision will cascade all the way to failure..., time to learn and build confidence, feeling you're "only starting", when you should be finished

small chunks

always focus on here, now, spread energy in time

procedure, 1. Start with ultimate deadline, 2. Work backwards, intermediate deadlines, rewards, if possible, specific actions, next action

Why it works, sense of control, no imposed deadline from authority, sense of accomplishment, rewards

work of worrying

for fear of failure

stress, beneficial, if not loop, negative images, threaten, use the way it was designed for, readying for positive action, procedure, questions, acknowledge possibility of failure, 1. "What is the worst that could happen?", 2. "What would I do if the worst really happened?", this gets you out of the loop!, "no event can ever stop me", 3. "What alternatives would I have?", no "lock-in" in "perfect" situation, many ways to be happy and successful, minimize failure, 4. "What can I do now to lessen the probability of this dreaded event occurring?", next actions, small things, 5. "Is there anything I can do now to increase my changes of achieving my goal?, negative side has been dealt with, now, tackle the real goal!

persistent starting

for fear of finishing

handle counterproductive statements, "I only need a little more time", no level is safe from criticism, perfectionism, separate self-worth, work, #1, real, completed, imperfect, #2, ideal, incomplete, late, "I need to do more preparation before I start", label as procrastination, no escape from work, doing it, choose this one, only reliever, long-run, anxiety, stress, only solution, start working, worrying about it, "at this rate, I'll never finish", learning curve, 3-dimensional thinking, guilt-free play, "I should have started earlier", half-empty cup syndrome, "there's only more work after this", there will be a choice later, independent steps, "it's not working", creativity


principles, focus on get started, 30 min of quality work, based on, guilt-free play, quality work, even producers need a system!, B. F. Skinner, "punch" clock, chair, check-in, check-out, reverse psychology, not work harder!, more time in leisure, more quality in work, examples..., Do not work more than 20 hours a week on this project, Do not work more than 5 hours a day on this project, You must exercise, play, dance at least one hour a day, You must take at least one day a week off from any work, Aim for only 30 minutes of quality work, Work for an imperfect, perfectly human first effort., Start small., unconscious desire, work more, play less, "resist authority"

procedure, schedule non-work, previously committed time, meals, sleep, meetings, free time, recreation, leisure reading, socializing, health activities, swimming, running, tennis, routine structured events, commuting time, classes, medical appointments, sharpen perception of actual time available, no 24h a day, no 48h a weekend, be a better time manager, put work in Unschedule, after, completed, 30min, take credit, 30min, uninterrupted, has to be quality work, tip, schedule AAA project, first thing on morning, reward yourself, break, change to more pleasant task, positive association, work, keep track, quality work hours, day, week, emphasize accomplishment, watch for patterns, day off, full day, recreation, small chores, goals, rejuvenation, maintain creativity, motivation, before planned leisure, principles, uses attraction to pleasure activity to get started more often, enjoy leisure without guilt, kick subconscious mind to work in leisure, work 30 minutes, leisure activity, creates motivation, reinforces good habit, Grandma's Principle, "ice cream only after spinach", focus on starting, think small, do not aim for, finish a book, write letters, work for four hours, aim for, 30min of quality work, keep starting, forget about finishing, starting is the only thing, never end down, breaks following work, avoid creating poor work habits, never take break or reward, when you're, blocked, at the end of a section, extra 5 or 10 minutes, extra partial solution, makes easier to start next time