Atomic Habits Summary

atomic habits cover

Atomic Habits by James Clear
An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones

My Thoughts

James Clear did a nice job of compiling and summarizing knowledge on habits from various sources and then adding specific actionable steps. He has also created good tools and media as companions to the book which are available for free, see links in the summary below.

My Favorite Quotes

  • Changes that seem small and unimportant at first, will compound into remarkable results if you are willing to stick with them for years.
  • In the long run, the quality of our lives often depends on the quality of our habits.
  • It is so easy to overestimate the importance of one defining moment and underestimate the value of making small improvements on a daily basis.
  • You do not rise to the level of your goals, you fall to the level of your systems.
  • Progress requires un-learning.
  • Habits do not restrict freedom, they create it.
  • We often say yes to little requests because we are not clear about what we need to be doing instead.
  • When your dreams are vague, it is easy to rationalize little exceptions all day long, and never get around to the specific things you need to do to succeed.
  • Habits form based on frequency, not time.
  • It doesn’t matter what you are trying to become better at, if you only do the work when it is convenient or exciting, then you’ll never be consistent enough to achieve remarkable results.
  • Professionals stick to the schedule, amateurs let life get in the way.
  • Habits are the backbone of any pursuit of excellence.
  • Success is not a goal to reach or a finish line to cross, it is system to improve, an endless process to refine.

Key Questions

  • Who is the type of person that could get the outcome I want?
  • Am I becoming the type of person I want to become?
  • How can we design a world where it is easy to do what is right?
  • What feels like fun to me, but work to others?
  • What makes me lose track of time?
  • Where do I get greater returns than the average person?
  • What comes naturally to me?
  • What went well this year?
  • What didn’t go so well this year?
  • What did I learn?

Introduction

Changes that seem small and unimportant at first, will compound into remarkable results if you are willing to stick with them for years.

In the long run, the quality of our lives often depends on the quality of our habits.

With the same habits, you will end up with the same results; but with better habits anything is possible.

To write a great book, you must first become the book. -Naval Ravikant

James Clear’s Four-Step Model of Habits

  1. Queue
  2. Craving
  3. Response
  4. Reward

The Fundamentals: Why Tiny Changes Make a Big Difference

Chapter 1: The Surprising Power of Atomic Habits

It is so easy to overestimate the importance of one defining moment and underestimate the value of making small improvements on a daily basis.

Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement.
Only when looking back over 2, 5, or even 10 years later that the value of good habits and the cost of bad ones becomes strikingly apparent.

Success is the product of daily habits, not once-in-a-lifetime transformations.

You should be far more concerned with your current trajectory than with your current results.
For example, a millionaire that spends more than they earn each month is on a bad trajectory.

Your habits can compound for you, or against you.

Examples of Positive Compounding

  • Productivity: accomplishing one extra task each day accounts for a lot over an entire career.
  • Knowledge: a commitment to lifelong learning can be transformative.
  • Relationships: being a little bit nicer in each interaction can result in a network of broad and strong connections over time.

Breakthrough moments are often the result of many previous actions, which build up the potential required to unleash a major change. For example, a one-degree shift in temperature will cause ice to start melting.

Habits often appear to make no difference until you cross a critical threshold and unlock a new level of performance.

You do not make progress in a linear path. The most powerful outcomes are delayed.

In order to make a meaningful difference, habits need to persist long enough to break through a plateau. What James Clear calls the “plateau of latent potential.”

Forget about goals, focus on systems instead.

The difference between systems and goals. Goals are about the results you want to achieve, systems are about the processes that lead to those results.

Goals are good for setting a direction.
Systems are best for making progress.

Problems arise when you spend to much time thinking about your goals and not enough time designing your systems.

Problems that arise:

  1. Winners and losers have the same goals.
  2. Achieving a goal is only a momentary change.
    Example of cleaning your room one time, compared to changing your sloppy habits that created the messy room.
  3. Goals restrict your happiness.
    The implicit assumption behind goals is that you will be happy once you reach your goal. This keeps you putting happiness off until the next milestone.
  4. Goals are at odds with long-term progress.

Results are not the problem. What we really need to change are the systems that caused the results. When you solve problems at the results level, you only solve them temporarily. In order to improve for good, you need to solve problems at the systems level.

The purpose of setting goals is to win the game. The purpose of building systems is to continue playing the game.

You do not rise to the level of your goals, you fall to the level of your systems.

Chapter 2: How Your Habits Shape Your Identity (and Vice Versa)

Changing our habits is challenging for two reasons:

  1. We try to change the wrong thing.
  2. We try to change our habits in the wrong way.

An image of this is available at atomichabits.com/media

Three levels at which change can occur, imagine them like layers of an onion:

  1. Changing your outcomes. This level is concerned with changing your results.
  2. Changing your process. This level is concerned with changing your habits and systems.
  3. Changing your identity. This level is concerned with changing your beliefs; your world-view, your self-image, your judgments about yourself and others.

Outcomes are about what you get, processes are about what you do, identity is about what you believe.

We should focus on identity-based habits instead of outcome-based habits. Focus on who you wish to become.

The ultimate form of intrinsic motivation is when a habit becomes part of your identity.

The real reason you fail to stick with habits is that your self-image gets in the way. You can’t get too attached to one version of your identity.

Progress requires un-learning.

Your identity emerges out of your habits.

The process of building habits is actually the process of becoming yourself.

The Two-Step Process of Changing Your Identity

  1. Decide the type of person you want to be
  2. Prove it to yourself with small wins

When setting goals, work backward from the results you want to the type of person who could get those results.
Ask yourself, “who is the type of person that could get the outcome I want?”

The real reason habits matter is because they can change your beliefs about yourself.

You should ask yourself “am I becoming the type of person I want to become?”

Chapter 3: How to Build Better Habits in 4 Simple Steps

Habits do not restrict freedom, they create it.

The people who don’t have their habits handled are often the people with the least amount of freedom.

  • Without good financial habits, you will always be struggling for the next dollar.
  • Without good health habits, you will always seem to be short on energy.
  • Without good learning habits, you will always feel like you are behind the curve.

The 4-Step Process of Building a Habit (The Habit Loop)

  1. Cue
  2. Craving
  3. Response
  4. Reward

By the time we become an adult, we rarely notice the habits that are running our lives.

The Four Laws of Behavior Change:

  1. Cue: Make it obvious.
  2. Craving: Make it attractive.
  3. Response: Make it easy.
  4. Reward: Make it satisfying.

Invert these laws to break a bad habit:

  1. Cue: Make it invisible.
  2. Craving: Make it unattractive.
  3. Response: Make it difficult.
  4. Reward: Make it unsatisfying.

Whenever you want to change your behavior, you can ask yourself:

  1. How can I make it obvious?
  2. How can I make it attractive?
  3. How can I make it easy?
  4. How can I make it satisfying?

A habit is a behavior that has been repeated enough times to be automatic.
The ultimate purpose of habits is to solve the problems of life with as little energy and effort as possible.

The 1st Law: Make It Obvious

Chapter 4: The Man Who Didn’t Look Right

With enough practice, your brain will pick up the cues that predict certain outcomes, without consciously thinking about it.

Once our habits become automatic, we stop paying attention to what we are doing.

The process of behavior change always starts with awareness. You need to be aware of your habits before you can change them.

The habit scorecard is a simple exercise you can use to become more aware of your behavior.

James Clear has a habit scorecard template available at atomichabits.com/scorecard

Chapter 5: The Best Way to Start a New Habit

The two most common cues that trigger a habit:

  1. Time
  2. Location

Creating an implementation intention is a strategy you can use to pair a new habit with a specific time and location.

The format for creating an implementation intention is as follows:

When [situation x] arises, I will perform [response y].

Apply this strategy by filling out this sentence: I will [behavior] at [time] in [location].

Being specific about what you want, and how you will achieve it, helps you say no to things that can derail your progress, distract your attention, and pull you off course.

We often say yes to little requests because we are not clear about what we need to be doing instead.
When your dreams are vague, it is easy to rationalize little exceptions all day long, and never get around to the specific things you need to do to succeed.

Habit Stacking

One of the best ways to build a new habit is to identify a current habit that you already do each day and then stack your new behavior on top.

Habit stacking formula: after I [current habit] I will [new habit].

Example: after I [pour my cup of tea in the morning] I will [meditate for one minute].

Habit stacking works best when the cue is highly specific and immediately actionable. Do not make the cue too vague.

Chapter 6: Motivation is Overrated; Environment Often Matters More

Small changes in context can lead to large changes in behavior over time.

It is important to live and work in environments that are filled with productive cues and devoid of unproductive ones.

You don’t have to be the victim of your environment, you can also be the architect of it.

How to Design Your Environment for Success

Make the cues of good habits obvious in your environment.
Making a better decision is easy and natural when the cues for good habits are right in front of you.
Gradually, your habits become associated not with a single trigger, but with the entire context surrounding the behavior. The context becomes the cue.
It is easier to build new habits in a new environment because you are not fighting old cues.

Most people live in a world others have created for them. You can alter the spaces where you live and work to increase your exposure to positive cues and increase your exposure to negative ones. Be the designer of your world and not merely the consumer of it.

A stable environment where everything has a place and a purpose is an environment where habits can easily form.

Chapter 7: The Secret to Self-Control

The inversion of the first law of behavior change is “make it invisible.”

Disciplined people are better at structuring their lives in a way that does not require heroic willpower and self-control. They spend less time in tempting situations.

Simply resisting temptation is an ineffective strategy. In the short-run you can choose to overpower temptation; in the long-run, we become a product of the environment we live in.

Self-control is a short-term strategy, not a long-term one.

Summary of the First Law of Behavior Change

How to create a good habit:

  • Law 1: Make it Obvious
    • Application 1.1: fill out the habit scorecard and write down your current habits to become more aware of them.
    • Application 1.2: use the implementation intentions. I will [behavior] at [time] in [location].
    • Application 1.3: use habit stacking. After I [current habit] I will [new habit].
    • Application 1.4: design your environment, make the cues of good habits obvious and visible.
    • Application 1.5: reduce exposure, remove the cues of bad habits from your environment. (inversion of the first law)

You can download a printable version of these on a cheatsheet created by the author at atomichabits.com/cheatsheet.

The 2nd Law: Make It Attractive

Chapter 8: How to Make a Habit Irresistible

The more attractive an opportunity is, the more likely it is to become habit-forming.

Habits are a dopamine-driven feedback loop. When dopamine rises, so does our motivation to act.

It is the anticipation of reward, not the fulfillment of it, that gets us to take action. The greater the anticipation, the greater the dopamine spike.
Your brain has for more neural circuitry allocated for wanting rewards than for liking them.

It is the expectation of a rewarding experience that motivates us to act in the first place.

Temptation bundling is one way to make your habits more attractive. The strategy is to pair an action you want to do with an action you need to do.

Combine temptation bundling with habit stacking.

Rules for the Habit Stacking + Temptation Bundling Formula:

  1. After [current habit] I will [habit I need].
  2. After [habit I need] I will [habit I want].

Example formula if you need to express more gratitude and you want to read the news. After my morning coffee, I will say one thing I am grateful for that happened yesterday. After I say one thing I am grateful for, I will read the news.

Chapter 9: The Role of Family and Friends in Shaping Your Habits

We imitate the habits of three groups:

  1. The Close
  2. The Many
  3. The Powerful

Each group offers an opportunity to leverage the 2nd law of behavior change and make our habits more attractive.

One: Imitating the Close

One of the most effective things you can do to build better habits is to join a culture where:

  1. Your desired behavior is normal behavior.
  2. You already have something in common with the group.

Your culture sets your expectations for what is normal.

Two: Imitating the Many

Whenever we are unsure of how to act, we look to the group to guide our behavior.

When changing your habits means challenging the tribe, change is unattractive.
When changing your habits means fitting-in with the tribe, change is very attractive.

Chapter 10: How to Find and Fix the Causes of Your Bad Habits

Every behavior has a surface level craving and a deeper underlying motive.

Highlight the benefits of avoiding a bad habit to make it seem unattractive.

How to reprogram your brain to enjoy hard habits.
You can make hard habits more attractive if you associate them with a positive experience.
Try changing just one word. Say “I get to wake up early for work” instead of “I have to get up early for work.”
By changing one word, you shift the way you view events. You transform from seeing them as burdens into seeing them as opportunities.

You can reframe “I am nervous” to “I am excited and I am getting an adrenaline rush to help me concentrate.”

Create a motivation ritual by doing something you enjoy immediately before a difficult habit.

Summary of the Second Law of Behavior Change

How to create a good habit:

  • Law 1: Make it Obvious
    • Application 1.1: fill out the habit scorecard and write down your current habits to become more aware of them.
    • Application 1.2: use the implementation intentions. I will [behavior] at [time] in [location].
    • Application 1.3: use habit stacking. After I [current habit] I will [new habit].
    • Application 1.4: design your environment, make the cues of good habits obvious and visible.
    • Application 1.5: reduce exposure, remove the cues of bad habits from your environment. (inversion of the first law)
  • Law 2: Make it Attractive
    • Application 2.1: use temptation bundling. Pair an action you want to do with an action you need to do.
    • Application 2.2: join a culture where your desired behavior is normal behavior.
    • Application 2.3: create a motivation ritual. Do something you enjoy immediately before a difficult habit.
    • Application 2.4 (inversion of the second law): Reframe your mindset. Highlight the benefits of avoiding your bad habits.

You can download a printable version of these on a cheatsheet created by the author at atomichabits.com/cheatsheet.

The 3rd Law: Make It Easy

Chapter 11: Walk Slowly, but Never Backward

If you want to master a habit, the key is to start with repetition, not perfection.

The most effective form of learning is practice, not planning.

Just get your reps in.

Habit formation is the process by which a behavior becomes progressively more automatic through repetition.

All habits follow a similar trajectory from effortful practice to automatic behavior. This is a process known as automaticity, the ability to perform a behavior without thinking about each step. atomichabits.com/media has graphical representations of this.

Habits form based on frequency, not time.

What we should be asking is “How many repetitions are required to make a habit automatic?”

The amount of time you have spent performing a habit is not as important as the number of times you have performed it.

Chapter 12: The Law of Least Effort

Conventional wisdom holds that motivation is the key to habit change, but the truth is, our real motivation is to be lazy and to do what is convenient.

The law of least effort states: when deciding between two similar options, people will naturally gravitate toward the option that requires the least amount of work.
This idea is a foundational principle in physics known as the principle of least action. The path followed between any two points will always be the path requiring the least amount of energy.

The less friction you face, the easier it is for your stronger self to emerge. The idea is to make it as easy as possible, at the moment, to do the things that pay off in the long run.

When we remove the points of friction that sap our time and energy, we can achieve more with less effort. Tidying up feels good because we are simultaneously moving forward and lightening the cognitive load our environment places on us.

The central idea is to create an environment where doing the right thing is as easy as possible.

Increase the friction associated with bad behaviors. When friction is high habits are difficult.
It is remarkable how little friction is required to prevent unwanted behavior.

Prime the environment for future use.

How can we design a world where it is easy to do what is right?

Redesign your life so the actions that matter most are also the actions that are easiest to do.

Chapter 13: How to Stop Procrastinating by Using the Two-Minute Rule

Every day there are a handful of moments that deliver an outsized impact. The author refers to these little choices as “decisive moments.”

The difference between a good day and a bad day is often a few productive healthy choices made at decisive moments.

Even when you know you should start small, it is easy to start too big.

Two-minute rule: when you start a new habit, it should take less than two minutes to do.

Make your habits as easy as possible to start.
Once you have started doing the right thing, it is much easier to continue doing it.
A new habit should not feel like a challenge.
You want a gateway habit that naturally leads you down a more productive path.

Map out your goals on a scale from very easy to very hard, this will help you identify your gateway habit.
Example: goal = run a marathon. Gateway habit = put on your running shoes.

A habit must be established before it can be improved.
You have to standardize before you can optimize.

It is better to do less than you hoped, than to do nothing at all.

Once you have established the habit, you can combine the two-minute rule with the technique of habit shaping.

Example of habit shaping if you want to become an early riser:

  • Phase 1: be home at 10 PM every night.
  • Phase 2: have all devices turned off by 10 PM every night.
  • Phase 3: be in bed by 10 PM every night.
  • Phase 4: lights off by 10 PM every night.
  • Phase 5: wake up at 6 AM every day.

Chapter 14: How to Make Good Habits Inevitable and Bad Habits Impossible

Make your bad habits more difficult by creating a commitment device. A commitment device is a choice you make in the present that controls your actions in the future. Also known as a Ulysses pact.

Lock in your future actions while your mind is in the right place.

Some one-time actions create increasing value over time. A single choice can deliver returns again and again.

One-time Actions that Lock in Good Habits

  • Buy a water filter to clean your drinking water
  • Use smaller plates to reduce caloric intake
  • Buy a good mattress
  • Get blackout curtains
  • Unsubscribe from emails
  • Turn off notifications and mute group chats
  • Set your phone to silent
  • Use email filters to clear up your inbox
  • Delete games and social media apps from your phone
  • Buy good shoes to avoid back pain
  • Buy a standing desk
  • Enroll in an automatic savings plan
  • Set up automatic bill pay

Civilization advances by extending the number of operations we can perform without thinking about them. -Alfred North Whitehead

Summary of the Third Law of Behavior Change

How to create a good habit:

  • Law 3: Make it Easy
    • Application 3.1: reduce friction. Decrease the number of steps between you and your good habits.
    • Application 3.2: prime the environment. Prepare your environment to make future actions easier.
    • Application 3.3: master the decisive moment. Optimize the small choices that deliver outsized impact.
    • Application 3.4: use the two-minute rule. Downscale your habits until they can be done in two minutes or less.
    • Application 3.5: automate your habits. Invest in technology and onetime purchases that lock in future behavior.
    • Application 3.6 (inversion of the third law): increase friction. Increase the number of steps between you and your bad habits.
    • Application 3.7 (inversion of the third law): use a commitment device. Restrict your future choices to the ones that benefit you.

You can download a printable version of these on a cheatsheet created by the author at atomichabits.com/cheatsheet.

The 4th Law: Make It Satisfying

Chapter 15: The Cardinal Rule of Behavior Change

What is immediately rewarded is repeated; what is immediately punished is avoided.

Many of the choices you make today will not benefit you immediately. We live in a delayed-return environment. You can work for years before your actions deliver the intended payoff.

Most people will spend all day chasing quick hits of satisfaction. The road less traveled is the road of delayed gratification. If you are willing to wait for rewards, you will often face less competition and get a bigger payoff.

Add a little bit of immediate pleasure to the habits that pay off in the long run.

You want the ending of your habit to be satisfying.

Chapter 16: How to Stick with Good Habits Every Day

Nearly anyone can benefit from tracking in some form.

Use visual measurement when possible. Example: use a jar of 50 paper clips and move one to the empty jar when you complete a sales call. Do this until you make all 50 sales calls.

Use a habit tracker.

Habit tracking leverages multiple laws of behavior change. It simultaneously makes a behavior obvious, attractive, and satisfying.

The most effective form of motivation is progress.

Benefits of Habit Tracking:

  1. It creates a visual cue that can remind you to act.
  2. It is inherently motivating because you see the progress you are making and don’t want to lose it.
  3. Feels satisfying whenever you record another successful instance of your habit.
  4. It provides visual proof that you are casting votes for the type of person you wish to become.

James Clear has a template for download at atomichabits.com/tracker to track your own habits.

How to make tracking easier:

  1. Whenever possible, measurement should be automated.
  2. Manual tracking should be limited to your most important habits. It’s better to consistently track one habit than to sporadically track 10.
  3. Record each measurement immediately after the habit occurs.

Habit stacking + habit tracking formula.
After [current habit] I will [track my habit].

Never miss a habit twice in a row.

Knowing when and when not to track a habit.
The dark side of tracking a particular behavior is that we become driven by the number, rather than the purpose behind it.
We teach for standardized tests instead of emphasizing learning, curiosity, and critical thinking.

We optimize for what we measure. When we chose the wrong measurement, we get the wrong behavior.

Chapter 17: How an Accountability Partner Can Change Everything

You can create a habit contract to hold yourself accountable.
A habit contract is a verbal or written agreement in which you state your commitment to a particular habit and a punishment that will occur if you don’t follow through.

If you want to create your own habit contract or see examples of actual habit contracts, they can be downloaded at atomichabits.com/contract.

Summary of the Fourth Law of Behavior Change

How to create a good habit:

  • Law 4: Make it Satisfying
    • Application 4.1: use of reinforcement. Give yourself an immediate reward when you complete your habit.
    • Application 4.2: make “doing nothing” enjoyable. When avoiding a bad habit, design a way to see the benefits.
    • Application 4.3: use a habit tracker. Keep track of your habit streak and “don’t break the chain.”
    • Application 4.4: never miss twice. When you forget to do a habit, make sure you get back on track immediately.
    • Application 4.5 (inversion of the fourth law): get an accountability partner. Ask someone to watch your behavior.
    • Application 4.6 (inversion of the fourth law): create a habit contract. Make the costs of your bad habits public and painful.

You can download a printable version of these on a cheatsheet created by the author at atomichabits.com/cheatsheet.

Advanced Tactics: How to Go from Being Merely Good to Being Truly Great

Chapter 18: The Truth About Talent (When Genes Matter and When They Don’t)

The secret to maximizing your odds of success is to choose the right field of competition.

Habits are easier to perform, and more satisfying to stick with, when they align with your natural inclinations and abilities.

Competence is highly dependent on context.

If you want to be truly great, selecting the right place to focus is crucial.

Genes do not determine your destiny, they determine your areas of opportunity.

The key is to direct your efforts towards areas that both excite you and match your natural skills.
Align your ambition with your ability.

The Big Five Spectrums of Behavior

  1. Openness to Experience:
    Curious and Inventive <——> Cautious and Consistent
  2. Conscientiousness:
    Organized and Efficient <——> Easygoing and Spontaneous
  3. Extraversion:
    Outgoing and Energetic <——> Solitary and Reserved
  4. Agreeableness:
    Friendly and Compassionate <——> Challenging and Detached
  5. Neuroticism:
    Anxious and Sensitive <——> Confident, Calm, and Stable

Here is a recommended series of questions to ask yourself to continually narrow in on the habits and areas that will be most satisfying to you?

  • What feels like fun to me, but work to others?
  • What makes me lose track of time?
  • Where do I get greater returns than the average person?
  • What comes naturally to me?

The more you master a specific skill, the harder it becomes for others to compete with you.

Boiling water will soften a potato and harden an egg, you can’t control which you are.

Genes to not eliminate the need for hard work, they clarify it. They tell us what to work on.

Chapter 19: The Goldilocks Rule: How to Stay Motivated in Life and Work

The way to maintain motivation and achieve peak levels of desire is to work on tasks of just manageable difficulty.
Example: playing a game of tennis against a 4-year-old or a professional would both be boring and frustrating because they are the wrong level of difficulty for most people.

The Goldilocks Rule: humans experience peak motivation when working on tasks that are right on the edge of their current abilities.

The greatest threat to success is not failure, but boredom.

Once a habit is established, it is important to continue to advance in small ways. These little improvements and new challenges keep you engaged.

Successful people feel the same lack of motivation as everyone else. The difference is that they still find a way to show up despite the feelings of boredom.

As soon as we experience the slightest dip in motivation, we begin seeking a new strategy. Even if the old one is still working.

The sweet spot of desire occurs at a 50/50 split between success and failure. You need just enough winning to experience satisfaction and just enough wanting to experience desire.

No habit will stay interesting forever. You have to fall in love with boredom.

It doesn’t matter what you are trying to become better at, if you only do the work when it is convenient or exciting, then you’ll never be consistent enough to achieve remarkable results.

Stepping up when it is painful, annoying, draining, or boring is what makes the difference between a professional and an amateur.

Professionals stick to the schedule, amateurs let life get in the way. Professionals know what is important to them and work toward it with purpose, amateurs get pulled off course by the urgencies of life.

Chapter 20: The Downside of Creating Good Habits

Habits are the backbone of any pursuit of excellence.

When you can do it “good enough” on autopilot, you stop thinking about how to do it better.

You can’t repeat the same things blindly and expect to become exceptional. Habits are necessary, but not sufficient for mastery. You need a combination of automatic habits and deliberate practice.

Habits + Deliberate Practice = Mastery

Mastery is the process of narrowing your focus to a tiny element of success, repeating it until you have internalized the skill, and then using the new habit as the foundation to advance to the next frontier of your development.

Each habit unlocks the next level of performance. It is an endless cycle.

Reflection and review enable the long-term improvement of all habits. Without reflection, we have no process for determining if we are performing better or worse than yesterday.

Top performers in all fields engage in various types of reflection and review.

Some investors and executives keep a decision journal in which they record the major decisions they make each week, why they made them, and what they expect the outcome to be. They review their choices at the end of each month or year to see where they were correct and where they went wrong.

If you are interested in keeping a decision journal, James Clear has created a template for this incorporated into his habit journal at atomichabits.com/journal.

Two modes of reflection and review that James Clear uses:

  1. Annual review each December. Examples at jamesclear.com/annual-review
    Tally habits, articles published, workouts, etc.
    What went well this year?
    What didn’t go so well this year?
    What did I learn?
  2. An integrity report 6 months into the year.

Whoever is stiff and inflexible is a disciple of death, whoever is soft and yielding is a disciple of life. -Lao Tzu

Conclusion: The Secret to Results that Last

The effect one small action can have when repeated enough times. See the ancient Greek parable the Sorites Paradox.

Success is not a goal to reach or a finish line to cross, it is system to improve, an endless process to refine.

The secret to getting results that last is to never stop making improvements. It is remarkable what you can build if you just don’t stop.

Related Book Summaries

Hope you enjoyed this and got value from my notes.
This is the 7th book read in my 2020 reading list.
Here is a list of my book summaries.

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