Warren Buffett’s Steps for Building Good Habits

Although it’s not something that people talk about all that much, Warren Buffett has some of the best (and worst) habits that a person can have. He drinks way too much Cherry Coke and eats fast food frequently, but he’s also cautious with his investing, reads frequently, and lives frugally. But all of his habits—both good and bad—are not just lucky happenstance; they’re intentional.

In order to be successful, you have to not only run your business with intention, but also live with intention. And part of that is having good habits. But how do you build good habits? It’s actually not as hard as you might think.

Here is what Warren Buffett recommends for anyone looking to build better habits:

  1. Write down a list of traits you possess. Be honest—write both good and bad
  2. Look around you and think about the people that you like the most. What is it about these people that you like the most? Write it down.
  3. Think about the people you like the least. What is it about these people that you dislike? Write it down.
  4. Compare the three lists, circling the traits ones that you want to adopt, and crossing out the ones you want to change or remove
  5. Consciously begin modifying your behavior to emulate the behaviors of those you admire, and remove the behaviors similar to those you dislike.

It sounds challenging, but it can be surprisingly simple to change your behaviors if you’re conscious about it. The most important step is identifying what you want to change, and then to do it intentionally. It might be a little difficult at first, but eventually it will become second nature.

“It’s better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction.” – Warren Buffett

It’s all about your personal perspective and your decisions. While Buffett will say that when you get older it’s harder to change your habits, this advice can be followed by just about anyone to not only improve themselves but also better the chance at success.

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