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"If you improve by one percent each day for one full year, you will be 37 times better"

"If you improve by one percent each day for one full year, you will be 37 times better"

So I started reading this book, Atomic Habits, which seems to be perfect for the start of the new year. One thing that stood out for me in the very beginning of the book was how we easily inflate the importance of one big moment we might experience like a PR and we undervalue the benefit of making the small improvements to get there like the months of banded pull-ups. We seem to have to make some paramount improvement that everyone will talk about instead of celebrating the habits you created to get there. If you improve by one percent each day for one full year, you will be 37 times better. The same is true if you get one percent worse each year. You will ultimately get very close to zero. Who doesn’t want to be thirty-seven times better this year than you were last year?

 

Here’s the problem...this is a slow paced transformation in a very fast paced society. We all want immediate feedback so waiting to see the improvement often times fails and we slip right back to old habits that don’t move us toward improvement. Success is a result of daily habits not the once-in-a-lifetime metamorphosis. In order for habits to make a difference, you have to pass over the critical threshold or the “Plateau of Latent Potential.” Crossing over this plateau is usually mistaken for an “overnight success.” We all know that’s not what happens at all. It’s the days, weeks, months, and even years of daily habits that bring on success. It’s that persistence when you feel like you’re not getting any stronger or faster. You keep pushing every day to get just a little bit better. That’s what brings about success. Big things don’t come about because of some “ah ha” moment. They develop from the tiny decisions you make and repeat daily. That’s what we should be celebrating.

These are a few things that I think are very insightful to repeat…

  1. Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement

  2. Habits are a double-edged sword that can work for you or against you

  3. Small changes often appear to make no difference until you cross a critical threshold. Be patient

  4. Atomic habits, little habits that are part of a big system, are the building blocks of remarkable results

  5. Forget setting goals. Focus on your system instead

  6. You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your system

 

To bring about effective change, your focus should be on who you want to become not what you want to achieve. Your uniqueness emanates out of your habits. Habits matter because they alter your own understanding about yourself. As you begin this year, think about your daily habits that work and those that don’t. Take the time to change your system so you can strive to be the best version of yourself. Notice the tiny daily changes that will take you where you’re heading. Adjust your habits when they are not carrying you in a positive direction. Most of all...Be patient.

 

-Coach Liz

 





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