Atomic Habits – James Clear

Atomic Habits favorite quote

We are so focused on figuring out the best approach that we never get around to taking action. As Voltaire once wrote, “The best is the enemy of the good” – James Clear – Pg. 142

Lessons learned from Atomic Habits

1. Habits are the keys to self improvement.

Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement. – James Clear – Pg. 16

James clear in Atomic Habits really challenged my worldview of habits. He compares them to compound interest in a financial sense that over time will cause you to see giant self-transformation. I have found in my own life that I have always associated habits with a negative connotation. I want to change my bad habits and rarely focused on them as a positive addition to my life. James Clear allowed me to begin to see that habits done over a long period of time can produce a significant change.

2. It is more about who you are than what you do.

The goal is not to read a book, the goal is to become a reader. The goal is not to run a marathon, the goal is to become a runner. The goal is not to learn an instrument, the goal is to become a musician. – James Clear – Pg. 34

It is so easy to focus on the things we do and the things we want to accomplish. I have always been a huge fan of checklists, bucket lists, 101 in 1,0001 lists. Which caused me to always focus on accomplishing things and what is the next thing to cross off the list. However, James Clear in Atomic Habits brings out this fantastic thought that the focus should be first who do you want to become.

If you start with who you want to be you can create habits that will help you become that person. There is a slight rush of dopamine when you accomplish something but that high doesn’t last and you have to accomplish another thing to feel that same rush. If you focus on who you are becoming you can eliminate that vicious cycle and live a life of fulfillment.

3. The two minute rule.

Nearly any larger life goal can be transformed into a two-minute behavior. – James Clear – Pg. 167

This for me was the most life-changing lesson. I am a passionate person who goes all out. If I read I want to finish the book in one day. When I work out I want to lose 10 pounds in a day. If I eat healthily I want to cut out everything in the first five minutes.

James Clear challenges the reader to start by making every habit take less than 2 minutes to accomplish. This was really hard for me because two minutes seems so useless but over the last 25 days, it has simply transformed my life. I am so much more consistent with the habits I am building in my life to create the person I want to become because of this two-minute rule.

Additional Reading

The aim of discussion, should not be victory, but progress. Joseph Joubert

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