Wednesday, December 15, 2010

101 Social Media Stats to Make Your Spirits Bright and Your Head Spin by Andrew Hanley

Social Media in the Daily Life of Web Users

Re post by Andrew Hanley

Far from complete, here is a brief (but current) breakdown of social media usage. It is (obviously) ramping up in adoption and is woven intricately into the daily lives of many web users. This trend has no sign of slowing down.

What Sources of Info Users Trust Completely on Social Media

In general, complete trust is at a premium online (and in real life, too, to be fair). People tend to trust their friends over brands, but they also tend to trust brands over independent bloggers.

  • 26% trust blog posts written by people they know
  • 23% trust posts by friends on Facebook
  • 12% trust their friends’ Twitter streams
  • 11% trust corporate blogs (We brand marketers have work to do!)
  • 9% trust Facebook updates from brands or companies
  • 8% trust fellow community member comments
  • 8% trust brand representative comments in online communities
  • 6% trust brand-run Twitter streams
  • 6% trust blog posts by independent bloggers
  • 5% trust independent blogger’s Twitter streams

When building trust in social media, people look at the following features to evaluate just how trustworthy a site or account is. Factors which build trust in social media:

  • 64% trust social media more if the dialogue is open to both positive and negative comments
  • 60% trust social media more if the author or sponsor is responsive
  • 38% trust social media more based on the size of the sponsor or authors following

On Twitter

Ever the darling of the blogosphere, Twitter has grown at an amazing rate over the past few years and has been adopted by everyone from the Fortune 500 to the revival-stage LeVar Burton. But what exactly is going on in the Twitterverse (sorry for using that terrible term)?

Behavior on Twitter

We can’t get away from seeing that blue logo on everything from the nightly news to the placemats at the local diner, but what exactly are people doing on Twitter?

  • 36% check for Tweets at least once per day.
  • 21% never check for Tweets
  • 72% post personal updates
  • 62% post work-related updates
  • 55% share links to news stories
  • 54% post general life observations (e.g. “The Metro is slow”)
  • 53% Retweet other users
  • 52% send direct messages (e.g. “Thank you for the follow, I look forward to your Tweets, please buy my eBook now on using dir msgs to monetize Twitter”)
  • 40% share photos
  • 28% share videos
  • 24% Tweet their location (Le sigh …)
  • 37% of Twitter users are more likely to purchase from a brand after becoming a follower
  • 33% of Twitter users are more likely to recommend a brand after becoming a follower

A breakdown of personal Tweets by content type:

  • 43% are conversational
  • 24% are status updates/ritualistic
  • 12% are news-related
  • 3% are seeking or giving advice
  • 1% are self-promotional (Come on, really? This number seems to be missing several hundred zeroes.)

Reasons why consumers interact with brands on Twitter:

  • 33% of active Twitter users share opinions about products or companies
  • 32% make recommendations  about products or companies
  • 30% ask for recommendations
  • Of those, 43% are sharing news or information about the brand
  • 35% are “using” the brand (e.g. “Checking out a demo of @TweetMonetizer. They rule!”)
  • 21% are voicing their opinion about the brand
  • 1% are conversing directly with the brand

A breakdown of brand/marketer Tweets by content type:

  • 75% are general information and news
  • 16% are conversing with a consumer
  • 6% are showing personality or quirks
  • 2% are coupons or sales codes
  • 1% are conversing with another brand (Keep your friends close and your enemies closer?)

When people leave – gasp! – Twitter, where are they going?

  • 47% click on news
  • 10% click on Technology-related content
  • 10% click on celebrity/entertainment content
  • 6% click on movie-related content
  • 4% click on “how-to” and DIY content
  • 23% click on “other” types of content  (Helpful, isn’t it?)

On Facebook

Facebook is bigger than the Beatles (and you know what that means). But what are people doing there (besides checking up on ex-girlfriends?)

Why Facebook users “Like” a brand on Facebook

  • 25% want to receive discounts and promotions
  • 21% are customers of the brand
  • 18% want to show support for the brand
  • 10% do it for fun and entertainment
  • 8% want to be the first to know information about the brand
  • 6% want access to exclusive content
  • 5% followed a friend’s recommendation to “like” a brand
  • 4% want to be part of the brand/fan community
  • 2% work for the brand (Doesn’t this seem low??)

What caused Facebook users to like a brand’s page in the first place?

  • 75% connected because they were invited by the brand directly
  • 59% connected because they were invited by a friend
  • 49% connected as the result of personal research

And why do people unsubscribe from a brand’s Facebook page?

  • 32% were no longer interested in the brand
  • 27% thought updates were published too frequently (i.e. Don’t flood my stream)
  • 22% thought updates were uninteresting
  • 12% plain did not like the updates
  • 7% thought updates didn’t come enough (i.e. Don’t starve my stream)
  • Only 17% of Facebook users are more likely to purchase from a brand after “liking” their page
  • 21% of Facebook users are more likely to recommend a brand after “liking” their page

Where Do People Go When They Leave Facebook?

  • 18% leave for news content
  • 18% leave for their celebrity/entertainment fix
  • 17% leave for video game-related content
  • 12% leave for technology content
  • 9% leave for “how-to” and DIY-related content
  • 26% leave for “other” reasons (Maybe they head to Twitter?)

So What Does it All Mean?

It’s fun (sort of) to look at numbers and see how social media has erupted onto the media landscape with no signs of flowing back, but what does it mean for the future of our industry?

Instead of boring you with an analysis, I figured I’d make up some statistics myself to wrap things up. Like:

  • 100% of you use social media, and will continue to do so in the near future
  • 90% of you will wish you could get your money back for reading this far
  • 87% of you will wonder why I didn’t mention YouTube, MySpace, or any of the other major social media spaces out there (I got sort of exhausted, and besides, 101 is a pretty nice number)
  • 56% of you will think this was nice, but relatively useless for drawing conclusions
  • 42% of you wish there were 101 more stats
  • 2% of you counted to see if there were really 101 stats here (and yes, I’m counting these made-up ones)
  • .001% of you will understand that I was just trying to be helpful because I personally get frustrated scouring the web for useful statistics when making a case, a PowerPoint, or a blog post on (thanks Mom!)

Posted via email from Elena's posterous

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Future of Advertising | Fast Company

"Digital is incremental, experimental, continually optimized -- "perpetual beta" -- and never, ever finished. "Digital will fuck you up and the way your agencies are built to make money, staff things, price things," says the instructor. " from HyperFactory

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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Song of the Day - The Trial from the Wall pt 2

This gem has been stuck in my head ever since I saw Roger Waters perform the wall in it's entirety live 2 Fridays ago. Erin, Jen and Gham this one's for you.  "You little shit! Your're in it now, I hope they throw away the key...."

Posted via email from Elena's posterous

The 10 Most Valuable Blogs in America - Douglas A. McIntyre, Michael B. Sauter, and Ashley C. Allen - Business - The Atlantic

I think this is interesting, having read most of these "hub" blogs and some of the blogs in the family, I would have to agree. LifeHacker can't be beat for tech clues to maximize the efficiency of your daily computer use. The Huff is unparalleled news if you have the time. Mashable is the one up of all things digital and now.

The list goes on. If you are looking for good resources on the web start here.

Posted via email from Elena's posterous

Friday, September 10, 2010

LiquidThread is now hiring!

We have an immediate full time opening for a righteous HTML dev who is also comfortable with the command line. Send resumes or pass along to your friends who might fit the bill.

Posted via email from Elena's posterous

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Song of the Day - Yesterday: Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros - HOME (demo)

Yes this came up on the sequential day and has all the happiness of synchronicity. Enjoy! ...and thanks Jeff for this earful of goodness!

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Song of the Day - Merry Go Round

Merry - Go - Round by Antje Duvekot  
Download now or listen on posterous
08 Merry-Go-Round.mp3 (4643 KB)

I don't know much about this singer Antje Duvekot but I really dig this tune for the first song of summer. Happy, mellow, catchy summer song of love! Any votes for must see concert of the summer? I am liking Ray LaMontange and David Gray at Millenium Park.



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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Friday, May 28, 2010

Rachel Maddow- The more spills change_ the more they stay the same

Sadly this is true - there is a possible solution to stop the oil...only they haven't started it yet

Posted via web from Elena's posterous

Monday, May 17, 2010

Depaul UK / iHobo / Contagious Magazine

Check this iPhone App..... seriously brilliant mate!

Posted via web from Elena's posterous

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Monday, April 19, 2010

Five rational arguments against Apple's 3.3.1 policy - (37signals)

Many developers are up in arms about a new policy from Apple that mandates all iOS applications to be written in either a flavor of C or JavaScript. It’s original motivation is apparently to prevent Adobe’s imminent Flash-to-iOS compiler in CS5 from working, but the collateral damage is much greater than that.

There’s a wealth of cross-compilers in the wild that looks to be outlawed by the same provision. Titanium, Gambit Scheme, MonoTouch, and Unity3D are a few of the bigger ones. These layers allow you to write applications in programming languages like Scheme or C# and compile that into a native iOS applications (as well as other platforms like Android).

Lots of developers, me included, have had such a gut-turning reaction to Apple’s new policy that we have a hard time thinking and speaking rationally. The emotions take over and we start screaming “fascists!”, which isn’t very persuasive to non-developers who don’t have the same instinctual reaction. So instead, allow me to go through five (mostly) rational arguments for why this is a bad idea.

1. The App Store is not a carefully curated gallery
Some have argued that if Apple lets Flash developers compile their applications to iOS, the App Store is going to be overrun by shitty applications and regular folks won’t be able to find anything. The barbarians are at the gate!

The problem with that argument is that the App Store already has some 180,000 apps listed. I assure you that they are not all cream puffs. I also assure you that there is no way that the best flash application is worse than the worst native app currently in the App Store.

This argument would have worked if the App Store was a carefully curated gallery of perhaps 1,000 applications. But it is not, which, btw, is totally fine. The web is not a carefully curated gallery of web pages and yet we’re still able to find the good stuff all the time thanks to intermediaries of discovery.

2. Changing your license in-flight makes developers nervous
This issue is exactly why developers fear being sharecroppers. One day you’re happily developing an application for Apple’s platform and dreaming of big things to come, the next Apple kills you dead with the stroke of a pen.

It’s hard to build a business on a platform where you feel like you cannot trust the men in power. If they can take down Adobe a few days before the launch of their flagship product, what hope do smaller players hold?

If you view the economy as the App Store, Apple can be viewed as Venezuela where the rules of commerce are constantly changed and investors start fleeing for the fear that they’re next. They may not leave today because of vested interests, but you’re scaring good people away and driving them to alternative platforms. But since the effects won’t be felt tomorrow, it doesn’t appear nearly as dangerous as it really is.

3. Enforcing public APIs does not make Apple beholden to Adobe
Louis Gerbarg argues that Apple will be beholden to Adobe if they allow Flash as a cross-compilation layer because of backwards compatibility concerns. I don’t think that’s true. First of all, Apple already has a policy against use of private APIs. They can reject applications from the App Store if they find them in violation, Flash-compiled or not.

Second, imagine if you have 1,000 applications done against the native APIs. What’s the likelihood that some of them will be using private calls? Given the debacles we’ve seen so far over this, I’d say that a fair number of them will. Thus, these applications might potentially break when Apple updates iOS.

Now imagine the same 1,000 applications written in the sandbox of Flash. Is it easier or harder to ensure that the Flash compiler doesn’t tab into private APIs than it would be with 1,000 independent apps written straight to the metal? I’d say easier.

Also, who stands to lose more if all these applications break: Apple or Adobe? Adobe would screw over their entire base of developers and Apple would lose 1,000 applications. I’d say Adobe would be in more hot water and given all the hoopla, I think they’re going to be extra diligent to not step over the public/private API lines.

4. Selective enforcement is unfair and unsettling
The App Store review process has long been under fire for being fraught with selective enforcement. Some apps get rejected for the doing things already-confirmed apps didn’t get questioned about. This is especially true when Tier A developers like EA gets away with things that Tier C developers in their basement don’t. It breeds an air of aristocracy where the lords can roam as they please but the peasants are kept on a tight leash.

This selective enforcement is already happening with built-in interpreters. Apple’s rule 3.3.2 reads:

An Application may not itself install or launch other executable code by any means, including without limitation through the use of a plug-in architecture, calling other frameworks, other APIs or otherwise. No interpreted code may be downloaded or used in an Application except for code that is interpreted and run by Apple’s Documented APIs and built-in interpreter(s).

This means no Java or Flash apps that just run within an interpreter. But it’s also supposed to mean that game developers like EA and others can’t use languages like Lua to program gameplay, yet that isn’t happening. The lords are free to roam indeed.

5. For developers it’s about more than just business
“But hey, if you don’t like it, why don’t you just go somewhere else?”. Developers are indeed free to vote with their feet. Take their code to more open platforms and stop complaining about Apple. Some already have.

But remember that many developers came to Apple in the first place to escape these kind of antics from the big man of the day, Microsoft. Apple has benefitted big by appealing to developers on more than just business. Many developers switched to Apple long before it was economically a good idea just so they could get away from Microsoft.

Look at the number of great free, ad-less applications in the App Store. Programmed by developers who did it for fun and love. Because they could and they wanted to. Not just because Apple had the biggest market share of smart phones. Apple benefits from that.

It’s better to be loved than to be feared. It’s only when you can’t make them love you that you want them to fear you. Apple has jumped the gun. We weren’t done loving you before you made us fear you.

Worth the read. From 37 Signals - Or 'Why this hissy fit against Adobe is in such poor form.....

Posted via web from Elena's posterous

Thursday, April 15, 2010

My first days as a wireless iPad User

The iPad, well hmm so far I must admit and my experience has been limited, the thing is a beautiful indulgent lovely digital toy. Now if your thing is having the latest greatest gadget or being the coolest kid on the block this baby is for you. Me….I’m a little more practical. And no kidding you can see where this thing is going. Say good bye to the printed newspaper or magazine, as the newspaper experience really is wonderful. Big sexy clickable pictures….very nice. Sliding page turns…good. The whole back light while reading conversation has yet to be played out so we shall see.


The primary and as far as I can tell only really big drawback right now is the wireless situation, which for me is out-of–control. Granted I have had an extremely unusually unwired week in that I have been in long client meetings in office parks in the suburbs of Chicago.  And then planes, trains and automobiles, while traveling for work, to finally get to shooting on get this…an unwired sound stage in LA!


The thing is, what I really wanted was a lighter cooler sleeker computer. I fully expect to be able to maximize my morning commute on the train while lightening the load on my back. I want to check my email, review bids and write letters of congratulations on the train. I want to get a cute little bag to carry it in. Right now, I am out of luck Charlie. (at least until the end of April)


There are some things that are purely Apple and purely wonderful, like the photos display beautifully. I mean they just look so pretty with the image popping in all that wonderful black. Shining back at me from that sleek surface, my kids really are beautiful but this is re-donkulous! And photo event has a great interface, double tap on what looks like a pile of snapshots and they all fly out into an organized display. Oh and the application icons float across the top of the background like a puck on ice.  It is fun to just drag your finger across the screen back and forth and watch them float seamlessly on their own plane.  As you would expect the sound quality is wonderful; warmer than the iPhone and more fully bodied with a nice balance in the mix. Volume wise the output through the machine is totally reasonable, although for my 3-chord rock fix I could always use more juice.


I can’t wait to try the book and internet experience but this lack of access, which is in fact raising all kinds of issues for me is shutting me out.  I am so used to being connected that these 48 hours of forced wireless-ness (even my freaking’ hotel room was offline this morning) is really making me wonder why the hell wireless isn’t everywhere and free. I want Universal Healthcare and Universal Wireless! These are my rights! It’s like information is being withheld from me, and now I am thinking about the digital divide and how it really is a class issue and what’s going to happen with this kind of democracy anyway?


So I put it down or rather hand it off and every single person I have shared this technology with is in love. They want to play my games. They want to look at my photos. I am getting especially good feedback from the girls in the room, on this Delta Make A Mess app that, Pixel did in fact develop. I swear I just handed it to them blind. (they especially love the faucet washing). I hand it to our very prolific Hollywood director and all he can say is “J’adore…j’adore” but he is also the kind of guy, who shouts, “Check the gate” on a video shoot so we both laugh.


The vast potential of the thing is intoxicating though… I mean you can see it. Entertainment unparalleled at your fingertips. Print publications become and indulgence for the rich and shameless. Right now I am loving the eco friendliness of it all and once I get it loaded I am all in.


I want this tool to work, although sucking down another ~$30 a month to be connected is going to irritate me.  I mean let’s do the math here, you have your home internet, I got cable for speed even thought there are cheaper services out there that’s $70 bucks, plus my iPhone which is something like $120 a month or, and then I want the mobility and full functionality of the iPad so that is probably at least $30 bucks a month, which puts me at two hundred George Washington’s a month for total connectivity. That doesn’t even include the $500 of the pad itself and the $10 app purchase suddenly I am thinking you gotta really budget for this thing or else it becomes that giant sucking sound in your wallet…again. Plus it is yet another thing to sync.


Ah but the PA’s can’t get enough. I am having trouble getting it back and I really do want to load it up and ride the net.




Posted via email from Elena's posterous

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

IPad Day One

First let me say loudly and clearly wireless ain't shit. I never realized before how much I relied on my 3g network connection to use so many of the awesome features of my phone but without it this this is really not all that great and I am sorry to say that I am not the most adept user but due to storms and unknown passwords I couldn't get this bab

Sent from my iPhone

Posted via email from Elena's posterous

Thursday, April 1, 2010

30 Habits that Will Change your Life

30 Habits that Will Change your Life

Developing good habits is the basic of personal development and growth. Everything we do is the result of a habit that was previously taught to us. Unfortunately, not all the habits that we have are good, that’s why we are constantly trying to improve.

The following is a list of 30 practical habits that can make a huge difference in your life.

You should treat this list as a reference, and implement just one habit per month. This way you will have the time to fully absorb each of them, while still seeing significant improvements each month.

Health habits

  1. Exercise 30 minutes every day. Especially if you don’t do much movement while working, it’s essential that you get some daily exercise. 30 minutes every day are the minimum recommended for optimal health.
  2. Eat breakfast every day. Breakfast is the more important meal of the day, yet so many people skip it. Personally, I like to eat a couple of toasts in the morning along with a fruit beverage.
  3. Sleep 8 hours. Sleep deprivation is never a good idea. You may think that you are gaining time by sleeping less, when in reality you are only gaining stress and tiredness. 8 hours are a good number of hours for most people, along with an optional 20 minutes nap after lunch.
  4. Avoid snacking between meals. Snacking between meals is the best way to gain weight. If you are hungry, eat something concrete. Otherwise don’t. Update: for clarification, I mean don’t eat junk food between meals, but eating real food it’s ok.
  5. Eat five portions of fruits and vegetables every day. Our body and brain loves getting vegetables and fruit, so I highly recommend eating as much of them as possible. Five portions is the dose that’s usually recommended by many health associations.
  6. Eat fish. Fish is rich of omega 3 and other healthy elements. At least one meal per week of fish should be enough for getting all these nutrients.
  7. Drink one glass of water when you wake up. When you wake up, your body is dehydrated and needs liquid. Make the habit of drinking one glass of water after you wake up in the morning. Also, drink more during the day.
  8. Avoid soda. Soda is often one of the most unhealthy beverage you can find. Limit your consumption of soda as much as possible and you’re body will be grateful for that.
  9. Keep your body clean. I don’t advise spending your day in front of the mirror, but a minimum of personal care does never hurt.
  10. If you smoke, stop it. There’s no reason to smoke anymore, and quitting is easy.
  11. If you drink, stop it. Same as above. Don’t think that alcohol will solve your problems. It never does. The only exception is one glass of wine per day during meals.
  12. Take the stairs. This is just a hack that forces you to do a minimum of exercise. Instead of taking the elevator, take the stairs.

Productivity habits

  1. Use an inbox system. Make the habit of keeping track of all the ideas and things that comes to mind. You can use a notebook to do this, and then sync everything on your computer.
  2. Prioritize. If you have a list of things to do, where do you start? One way is to prioritize your list. If you are in doubt, ask yourself: “If I could only accomplish one thing today, what would it be?”
  3. Plan, but not too much. Planning is important, and you should decide in advance what you are going to do today or this week. However, planning for more than a few weeks is usually inefficient, so I would not worry too much about that.
  4. Wake up early. Waking up early in the morning is a great way to gain extra time. I personally like to wake up at 5 am, so that by 9 am I have already accomplished what otherwise would have taken me many days..
  5. Check your email only twice per day. Email can easily become an addiction, but it’s usually unnecessary to check it every 10 minutes. Make an effort and check your email only once or twice per day, see if the world will still rotate as before after you try this.
  6. Eliminate unimportant tasks. Being busy all day does not mean you are doing important stuff. Eliminate every activity that’s not important, and focus on what really matters.
  7. Clean off your desk and room. Having a clear room and desk is important to maintain focus and creativity.
  8. Automate. There are a lot of tasks that you need to perform every day or every week. Try to automate them as much as possible.
  9. Set strict deadlines. When you do something, decide in advance when you’re going to stop. There’s a rule that states that you will fulfill all the time you have available for completing a task, so make an habit of setting strict deadlines for maximizing your productivity.
  10. Take one day off per week. Instead of working every day, take one day off per week (for example sunday) where you are not going to turn on your computer. Use that time for doing recreational activities like going for a walk.

Personal Development habits

  1. Read 1 book per week. Reading is a good way to keep your brain active. With just 30 minutes per day you should be able to read one book per week, or more than 50 books per year.
  2. Solve puzzles. Quizzes, word games, etc. are all good ways to exercise your brain.
  3. Think positively. You are what you think, all the time.
  4. Make fast decisions. Instead of thinking for one hour wherever you are going to do something, make your decisions as fast as possible (usually less than 1 minute).
  5. Wait before buying. Waiting 48 hours before buying anything is a tremendous money saver, try it.
  6. Meditate 30 minutes per day. A great way to gain clearness and peace is through meditation. 30 minutes are not a lot, but enough to get you started with meditation.

Career habits

  1. Start a blog. Blogging is one of the best way to put your word out. It doesn’t have to be around a specific topic, even a personal blog will do.
  2. Build a portfolio. If your job is creating stuff, building a portfolio is a great way to show what you are capable of. You can also contribute stuff for free if that applies to your work.

What do you think? What are the habits that changed your life?

Posted on March 19 2010

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Here are all the comments for this post. I'd love to hear your opinion too.

  1. AvatarDaniel Says:
    March 19 2010 at 13:29

    I’m just gonna go make 8 hrs a day sleep a consistent habit. Terrible having 5 to 6 hours each day.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 19 2010 at 14:32

      Hey Daniel, yes that’s terrible indeed. That should be your first priority.

      reply to this comment

  2. March 19 2010 at 16:12


    I love this post. I’m sure I do a good amount of these already, but just by adding a few to the list I’m sure I could create some dramatic changes in my life.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 19 2010 at 17:47

      Hey Srinivas, yes each of those is very powerful. I have still to implement many of them myself, but those are my target anyway.

      reply to this comment

  3. March 19 2010 at 17:21

    Hey Oscar,

    I think the key is making all these changes as you characterized them – habits. It doesn’t help to only work out occasionally, sleep 8 hours when it’s convenient etc

    Like you, when I implement changes in my life, I shake up my whole routine so these new changes become habits and stick with me.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 19 2010 at 17:49

      Hey Sid, yes you’re right. When I wrote this post I was thinking at habits that could be coexist together, otherwise you would have to choose which one to implement and which not.

      reply to this comment

  4. AvatarRyan Says:
    March 19 2010 at 17:51

    Awesome insight Oscar.

    I practice most of your tips. I’ve bumped up the meditation to 60 minutes a day. A 30 minute session morning and night. I notice more things, which enables me to be more productive while enjoying the ride.

    Meditation and at least 30 minutes of exercise would be #1 and #1a on my list.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 19 2010 at 20:37

      Hey Ryan, those list are not in particular order, although many have may have more importance than others.

      reply to this comment

  5. March 19 2010 at 18:31

    I wonder whether creating new habits to replace old is really the answer?

    Why not, instead, consider being more flexible and able to break out of habits more quickly.

    I’d refer you to the work of psychologist Professor Ben Fletcher and his colleagues on habit breaking and the benefits of that.

    “I have developed what is called a DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT (DSD) technique to facilitate change (basically changes in the persons’ behavioural flexibility are used to lever changes of mind and the greater deployment of willpower and effort).”


    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 19 2010 at 20:41

      Hi Pete and thanks for your comment. I agree that being flexible is very important and being able to switch from one habit to another very quickly is a nice skill to develop. But I still think most of the habits I listed here are not a replacement for something else, but rather a way of living perhaps. Maybe the ones under productivity can be more subjective.


      reply to this comment

  6. AvatarJen Says:
    March 19 2010 at 20:01

    A great list you have here Oscar. I do most of these already and they all have made a big difference to my life (especially regular exercise). One I need to get back in the habit of doing regularly is meditating. I love it when I do it and feel so great afterwards but somehow let it go by the wayside. Also I am vegetarian so don’t eat fish but do take veggie frinedly omega 3 to get my quota of that.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 19 2010 at 20:46

      Hey Jen, talking about meditation, it will be my next 30 days challenge because I want to get back into the habit too.

      reply to this comment

  7. AvatarDarby O'Connor Says:
    March 19 2010 at 21:36

    The Weekly Review has been a key habit. I know that Excersising daily is sure to spawn off many positive new habits. I would recommend this one to anyone who does not know where to begin personal development!

    Great summary of many effective habits!

    reply to this comment

  8. March 19 2010 at 23:15

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by oscardelben: 30 Habits that Will Change your Life

  9. March 20 2010 at 02:12

    Hey Oscar,

    I’m a particular fan of waking up early and only checking email twice a day. Your experiment in waking up at 5am actually inspired me to do the same, well 6am actually. I love it! I get an incredible amount of work done, all before lunch. Thank you

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 09:40

      Hey Ben, I’m glad you did that too. I think I’m gonna post my results of that experiment today.

      reply to this comment

  10. AvatarRenelda Says:
    March 20 2010 at 05:27

    I think i have sleep deprivation or insomnia. I do not recall sleeping for 8 hours. normally 4. I know it is bad but my mind is not at rest. I work 60 hours a week. I tried to think that if I am doing not doing nothing for personal development that I am wasting my life away.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 09:43

      Hey Renelda. Maybe meditation and giving up junk food, drinks, smoke wold help in your case. Also working 60 hours per week can be the source of a lot of stress.

      reply to this comment

  11. Avatartudza Says:
    March 20 2010 at 10:04

    There is no reason to smoke anymore? Obviously you do not smoke a pipe.

    Quitting is certainly easy enough. I feel no compulsion to smoke when I am on family vacations or I am sick.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 09:45

      Never tried that tudza, but I think it’s not that healthy, right? Anyway, it depends on how much you smoke, and how much you (think) you need it.

      reply to this comment

  12. Avatarmarius Says:
    March 20 2010 at 10:18

    Health habits: Avoid snacking between meals.
    This is the worst suggestion ever. It’s proven that eating between meals increases your metabolism, so it’s good to snack, but it really depends what your are snacking on, if it’s a jar of cookies, than probably better not to snack at all :)

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 09:48

      I wanted to add a note about this, but forgot at the end. You see, outside of america snacking between meals is very infrequent, and for a good reason. In my post I said eat something concrete because it’s ok to eat a sandwich or something real at any time of the day, the problem is when you snack with junk food. Maybe I should have been more clear about this.

      reply to this comment

  13. AvatarSudhir Khanger Says:
    March 20 2010 at 11:19

    A student definitely need about 8 hours of sleep but after School, Job and self study you don’t really get enough time and then you do need entertainment.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 09:50

      Hey Sudhir, I didn’t say it would have been easier, but it’s definitely possible. 8 hours are essential for most people, but if you are ok with less, good for you.

      reply to this comment

  14. AvatarMostafa Says:
    March 20 2010 at 11:49

    Hey Oscar,

    I just stumbled upon this post and i find it to be extremely useful. I am an engineering student and a lot of these habits could turn my life around 180 degrees. I am a smoker, I sleep around 3 to 5 hours a day, I never have breakfast and i also have poor planning schemes.The only thing i do is solve puzzles(since i am a computer engineer). I will start by doing the easy tasks, like having breakfast, and getting enough sleep. As for smoking, I have made a decision today that i am never smoking again, I just hope i stick to it. Developing good planning schemes may take some time but i am willing to give it a shot, that will definitely pay off. Again thanks for this nice post Oscar.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 09:51

      Hey mostafa, definitely start with the sleep thing. Also congrats for quitting smoke, that could possibly the best decision you’ll ever make. Let me know how it goes and if you need help.

      reply to this comment

    • AvatarAndrew Says:
      March 22 2010 at 12:44

      Very nice post Oscar.

      @Mostafa: if u wanna quit smoke easy just read the book Easyway to Stop Smoking by Allen Carr. I did it (from 2 packs/day) and a lot of friends too. Instantly. It’s great now. I can practice sport with pleasure, breath and think better. Good luck ;)

      reply to this comment

  15. March 20 2010 at 15:22

    awesome text, every single point is surely important to everyone.


    reply to this comment

  16. Avatarbrian Says:
    March 20 2010 at 15:36

    thanks for the good habits. I’m starting tomorrow.

    reply to this comment

  17. AvatarSam89 Says:
    March 20 2010 at 18:49

    Just discovered this blog and must say that I LOVE the tight, concrete/specific advices you just gave. Keep up the good work. Looking forward to reading the RSS :)

    reply to this comment

  18. AvatarTom Says:
    March 20 2010 at 19:58

    Go to hell, Mom.

    reply to this comment

  19. Avatartt Says:
    March 21 2010 at 06:57

    Stumbled across this and remembered, after a bit of self doubt, you, though likely a very nice person, probably don’t actually know very much about success, or how everyone should achieve it. Should you actually be “advising” anyone? Should I listen because you posted a list on the tubes?

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 10:01

      That’s up to you, and what you mean by success. I usually write about what I know about., that’s why I don’t have a list for how to become a millionaire.

      reply to this comment

  20. AvatarTilia Says:
    March 21 2010 at 10:57

    Hi, very good post you made. Most of the things I already do luckily.

    Only one point I really disagree with and that’s with eating fish. I do agree you need omega 3, but fish is about the unhealthiest choice to get it from. Are you aware that 100% of the fish in US streams is contaminated with Mercury? Mercury is a highly poisonous toxin.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 10:03

      Hey Tilia, yes I’m aware of that, and I take that issue seriously. I hope that you can get fish in the US that don’t come from those toxic sources.

      reply to this comment

  21. Avatargonmipaa Says:
    March 21 2010 at 12:27

    Qué buen post. Tantas cosas que he dejado pasar. ¡Ha recapitular mi vida!

    reply to this comment

  22. March 21 2010 at 20:54

    Hi Oscar, that’s a great list! You’ve dome a great job at compiling so many important habits into one list. I could probably add some more, but I have actually already done that on my blog :-) (so I won’t repeat myself)
    Thanks again for a great list!

    reply to this comment

  23. AvatarChristine Says:
    March 22 2010 at 02:04

    One habit that changed my life was a new year’s resolution: In 2009, I will not turn down any more social invitations. And by 2010, I wasn’t lonely anymore. I have lots of new and intelligent friends. Definitely changed my life.

    reply to this comment

  24. Avatarilsa Says:
    March 22 2010 at 03:34

    I have had a 10 oz glass of waster by my bed side and to drink down before my body temp changes from the sleep zone into awake and running all my conscious life. I have good skin… and more… hummmm

    reply to this comment

  25. AvatarDean Jackson Says:
    March 22 2010 at 04:27

    Snacking is actually good for you.

    The foods that folks choose to snack on, and the amounts of those foods people wind up eating? That’s the bad part.

    Stop eating junk. Stop overeating. Easy to say, but either hard or uninteresting to actually do for most folks.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 10:11

      Hey Dean, I replied to a previous comment about this. I agree that it’s good if you eat real food.

      reply to this comment

  26. March 22 2010 at 08:56

    Excellent list! I guess I knew some of them already, but receiving them in the form of a well thought of list will enforce them and drive me to follow them.

    However, one point I am slightly dubious about. Devoting just 30 min a day and reading a book a week. Is it really possible?

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 10:12

      Hey Saurabh, there’s only one way to discover that ;)

      reply to this comment

      • March 22 2010 at 17:12

        If you don’t mind, could you please share some techniques you follow? On an average, for a book that you find of an average grasping level, how many pages can you read an hour?

        Please excuse such mathematical curiosity, I am an engineer by heart and study. :)

        reply to this comment

        • AvatarOscar Says:
          March 22 2010 at 22:56

          I average 1 page per minute, so with 30 pages per day I can read 210 pages. Most book I read are between 200 and 300 pages, but more on the 200 side. When I read technical books tough, things changes. There I can read for months the same book, but then again I have different goals with them. I tried many speed reading techniques but they are not worth for me.

          P.S. I read in english which is not my primary tongue so you might perform better.

        • March 23 2010 at 02:06

          Thanks Oscar for the insight.

          You are doing a great job through this blog! Congratulations.

  27. AvatarJim Says:
    March 22 2010 at 15:05

    Good suggestions for the most part. The one I question though is geting up early.

    Morning people love t preach this like it’s the gospel, and they say you gain so much time, but I don’t see how you gain any time at all. You just shift your day. Assuming you want to get the same amount of sleep, gettingup earlier means going to bed earlier. Thus,you just shift your day forward, you still have the same amount of time.

    I work in a job where I support other people – accodingly, most days I need to be here from 9am to 5pm – during normal business hours. All getting up early would do for me is mean I work more (because I need to stay at work until 5ish regardless) and have less free time. Evening is when I socialize, spend time with friends, and relax. Morning = go to work. Why would I want to get up earlier??

    Plus, in my age group (young professional) going to bed at 9pm every night would totally destroy my social life. For example, I am on the board of a volunteer organization and our meetings often run past 9pm.

    Now, if you are married with kids and work from home, I see how getting up early could be great. You get time to work while the wife and kids sleep, and you’re done working by the time your kids finish school. But it isn’t a one size fits all. I think, really, the key is to go to bed on time whenever that is. Night owls tend to stay up late and sacrifice sleep to do it, which is always a bad idea.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 15:32

      Hey Jim, of course one fit all lists are never going to happen, you have to try out what works for yourself in all cases, despite what statistics are saying. Regarding this exact topic, I’m going to post later today my results of waking up at 5 am experiment. Thanks for your comment.

      reply to this comment

  28. AvatarDave Says:
    March 22 2010 at 21:35

    1. 30 minutes exercise 5 days a week is recommended levels.

    3. People who sleep 7 hours a night have a better life expectance than those who sleep 8.

    4. You’ve updated this one, but its still wrong.

    11. Wrong, “One found that men drinking between 21 and 30 units of alcohol a week had the lowest mortality rate in Britain. Another concluded that a man would have to drink 63 units a week, or a bottle of wine a day, to face the same risk of death as a teetotaller.”

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 22 2010 at 22:53

      Hi Dave, thanks for pointing out that I’m wrong, I’m sure you have your reasons and of course everyone is different. Anyway I just wanted to say that it’s more than being right or right, it’s about trying something new and discover what works for you, that’s what it’s all about. Even quitting smoking and drinking is (in my opinion) something that enables you to try different things, regardless of health benefits.

      reply to this comment

      • AvatarDave Says:
        March 22 2010 at 23:53

        If you’re going to give advice, then you have to be prepared for it to stand up to scrutiny.

        You are neither an expert (correct me if I’m wrong) nor do you cite your sources. I did not give you my opinion, I showed you places where you could get correct information.

        Based on current research, if everyone followed your advice, you would reduce life expectancy.

        reply to this comment

        • AvatarOscar Says:
          March 23 2010 at 07:54

          Of course I don’t expect everyone to agree with what I say, and I appreciate different feedbacks like your. Regarding sleep, we know very little about it and you have to see what works for you (ad it also depends on your age). The point of habits is to enable you to try something new, but you are free to try them or not, this is just a place where I share my experiences.

        • AvatarJohn Q Says:
          March 23 2010 at 17:25


          I feel your comments coming across like that person who wants to get attention on a American Idol contest. They know they don’t stand a chance but they hope that if they make enough noise they will get noticed.

          I disagree with some points that Oscar has made but I’m not here to make him tweak his post to my liking, I am here to read his comments and make the best of it. You made your point, he listened and then you moved on. The citations about only needing 7 hours of sleep at night is from a study conducted in 1988 and it is almost a common knowledge that you need at least 8 hours of sleep at night. Of course some of these studies are made just to “prove” wrong but at the end of the day take your time and sleep some days 7 hours at night while others 8 hours at night and let me know how you feel. You can’t make a rule that because some study made years ago is going to work for everyone and now we have to change our sleeping patterns.

          Another wrong citation "Wrong, “One found that men drinking between 21 and 30 units of alcohol a week had the lowest mortality rate in Britain. " Come on, you are not going to use the rule the world with a research done in Britain, If I say that a research done in Britain says that people who ate 10 jalapeños a day lived longer, you are going to do the same? We know by common sense that less alcohol is better, did you know that in 1988 there 51% of alcohol-related fatalities ( there are your statistics. Great benefit from drinking alcohol huh?

          Finally, if I was asked who’s advice I wanted to follow by just looking at your Avatar picture, I would say that I would rather look like Oscar than you. He looks healthier over all and he is being kind enough to gather his knowledge and put it on a blog post.

          I apologize if I wasn’t nice but I tried my best.

  29. AvatarAngela Says:
    March 24 2010 at 09:12

    Hi Oscar,
    Thank you for systemizing these habits and publishing them here. It’s a good reminder for everybody. I have about 10 of them already and will try to buid more.
    I just want to ask you and the others to help me with the meditation – never new how to do it :-(
    And a small suggestion for a habit – "Keep in touch with friends, even just to say Hi. Ask them “How are you?” and listen for the answer"
    Thank you

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 24 2010 at 10:25

      Hey Angela, thanks for your suggestion, that’s really a good habit to have. Regarding meditation you’re coming at the right time, in fact I’m starting a 30 days challenge on friday which will be all about meditation and visualization. I already did meditation before but I want to get back to the habit of doing it every day and I’ll write about the process here on the blog.

      reply to this comment

  30. AvatarJason Says:
    March 24 2010 at 17:02

    Bossy little thing, aren’t you?

    reply to this comment

  31. AvatarDale Says:
    March 24 2010 at 18:05

    Thanks for this list, Oscar. Perhaps it comes under the “Puzzles” category but learning to read a new language, however casually you approach it, is the ultimate brain workout. Better than a crossword puzzle. :-)

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 24 2010 at 19:18

      Hey Dale, great suggestion! I did this with English, and now I read and write everything in English (like this blog). Thanks for your comment.

      reply to this comment

  32. AvatarFarnoosh Says:
    March 25 2010 at 02:12

    I am supposed to do all this AND meditate 30 minutes a day? :)
    Just kidding – fantastic list! I am pleased with myself to see and know I do heaps of these already but there is always more ways to improve, enhance, and become better at things to live a better life. Excellent list. The healthy living habit is great, and for reading (especially the literary classics), a big thumbs up!

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 25 2010 at 10:07

      Hey Farnoosh! No you are not supposed to do everything :-), this is just my list, but you can try and then decide what’s worth for you and it’s not. Thanks for your comment.

      reply to this comment

  33. March 26 2010 at 15:43

    Drinking that first cup of water in the morning is essential and you then realise that you. It really gives you an amazing boost for the rest of the day. Great post Oscar

    reply to this comment

  34. March 28 2010 at 01:18

    Agree with all your points. Except for the 8-hour sleep and eating fish ones.

    I’m a vegan and dymaxion polyphasic sleeper (2 hours sleep per day) so…

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 28 2010 at 07:10

      Aha, yeah if you’re vegan and polyphasic I can see how you don’t agree with it. A question: do you practice intense sport activities? I’m trying to find out more about polyphasic sleep AND sport.

      reply to this comment

  35. AvatarMike Says:
    March 28 2010 at 22:16

    Hi Oscar,

    Great list. This weekend I reduced a ton of clutter and excess “Stuff” in order to help me prioritize what is important and let my mind relax.

    It is amazing what getting rid of clutter does for the mind.

    Take Care,


    reply to this comment

  36. AvatarAndrew Says:
    March 29 2010 at 22:24

    Time saving tip — one great thing about yoga is that you get exercise + meditation at the same time

    reply to this comment

  37. AvatarJo Says:
    March 30 2010 at 18:49

    Hi Oscar, and who with recyling? and sex?
    are two good practices, everything is very interesting.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 30 2010 at 19:15

      Hey Jo, of course they are, but I assumed everyone was doing them already :p

      reply to this comment

  38. AvatarWebme1 Says:
    March 30 2010 at 20:32

    What is refreshing about this article page is that you are taking the time to respond to so many people’s comments.

    Quite often you read an article and read comments that have little or no responses and to read your responses gives the whole page more life and interest.

    I will definitely be reading more of your articles.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      March 31 2010 at 06:16

      Hey, I think it’s important to reply to comments. After all someone has taken the time not only to read the article, but also to give their opinion, and I know we are all busy these days :-D. Thanks a lot for your feedback!

      reply to this comment

  39. AvatarTaylor Says:
    March 31 2010 at 23:54

    How about we add these to the list of life improving habits for any given situation:
    1. Check and adjust your breath
    2. Check and adjust your posture
    3. Answer the question: “what’s the right thing to do here?”
    4. Strive towards doing that “right thing”
    5. repeat

    reply to this comment

  40. April 01 2010 at 15:43

    You had me until “start a blog”.

    I LOVE this post. As a matter of fact, I booked marked and tagged it ‘read often’.

    However, the mathematics don’t quite work.

    If I wake up at 5 and need 8 hours of sleep, then I’m in bed by 9 pm.

    Assuming I’m at work by 8 am, home by 6 pm, how do I work out for 30 minutes, meditate for 30 minutes, read for 30 minutes (assuming I need to do that to finish a book a week), spend a few minutes every day cleaning my desk and do a puzzle? When will I have time to blog (or clean the house, pay my bills, grocery shop, or go to church for that matter)? Especially if I take off one day each week.

    These are great things to aspire to. But I don’t think one should feel bad if they don’t reach all goals every day (especially if you have children).

    I have a love / hate relationship with lists like these. I love reading them, but then they immediately make me feel guilty. As a working mom, I’m lucky if I can do these things once each week! Truly.

    But thank you for the reminders. Always good.

    reply to this comment

    • AvatarOscar Says:
      April 01 2010 at 16:49

      Hi Shari, making this list was not easy, and it’s certainly it’s not for everyone and for every situation. Also I don’t do every of them each day. Life is flexible and we’re not robots. Do you agree?

      reply to this comment

  41. April 01 2010 at 16:52


    Muy interesante!

    Cómo así llegaste a estas 30 recomendaciones?

    Pues si las practicas… o eres un santo; o no eres de este mundo!

    Un abrazo; JC.

    PS: Lo voy a postear en mi blog:

    reply to this comment

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