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Habits are the Compound Interest of Self Improvement

https://medium.com/the-mission/habits-are-the-compound-interest-of-self-improvement-6db4c51d1631

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Habits are the Compound Interest of Self Improvement
People struggle to develop and maintain new habits because they make their efforts unsustainable. They work out like crazy for a few days (usually at the beginning of the year), and never go back to the gym.

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The Compounding Effect of Habits

The progress we experience from the compounding effect of any habit isn’t immediately visible. As a result, people give up quickly

They don’t realize that every day they show up they’re building momentum. They are moving closer and closer to a breakthrough or inflection point.

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Consistency matters more than frequency

Consistency matters more than frequency

We usually make effort unsustainable. For example:

  • We work out like crazy for a few days (usually at the beginning of the year) and never go back to the gym.
  • We try to meditate for 30 mins one day and don’t give it another shot until 10 days later

But when it comes to developing and maintaining a new habit, frequency matters more than intensity.

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Identity-based Habits

Identity-based Habits
To build the identity of the person you want to become, ask yourself what the behavior of a person who has the habit you want to develop is. For example:
  • What is the behavior a person who is in shape? They go to the gym consistently
  • What is the behavior of a prolific writer? They crack open a notebook every day.

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Raise Your Level of Intensity Gradually

Raise Your Level of Intensity Gradually
When something becomes effortless, raise the level of intensity, to the point where you can get there without too much resistance, but it’s still somewhat challenging. To put it more concisely, bend but don’t break.

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Focus On Keystone Habits

Keystone habits lead to the development of multiple good habits. 

Exercise is a good example of this. Once you start to change your exercise habits, it sets off a chain reaction t...

Use “Minimum Viable Effort”

Focus on baby steps. The key to new good habits is to do the minimum and be consistent.

Do not be ambitious at the beginning. That leads to failure. Consistency is what you’re shooting for, so make the hurdle as low as possible.

Make A Plan

Thinking about the details makes you more likely to follow through. 

Just writing down your plan also makes a big difference in effectively committing to your goals.

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Making Your Habits Stick

To make any habit stick in the long-term (keystone or not), do it regularly. 

The more often you do the habit, the more you'll get used to it, and eventually, you'll do it wi...

Keep Track Of Your Habit Every Day

It helps to know how often you’re succeeding (or not). Use whatever works for you: pen and paper of habit tracking apps.

A simple way to keep track of your progress is to mark each day you complete your habit on a calendar.

Start Small

Do the minimum you can and be consistent in your behavior.

To create a new habit, you must first simplify the behavior.  A good tiny behavior is easy to do — and fast.

The power of consistency

... is profound and underrated. Little things done repeatedly lead to big changes in our lives.

If you can learn to do something consistently, you'll believe that you’re completel...

Inconsistency and confidence

Doing a little consistently is always going to be more effective than doing a lot but inconsistently.

Inconsistency will most likely kill your confidence and your ability to succeed in a creative career or any creative endeavor.

Consistency creates momentum

Momentum is based on the idea that an object in motion stays in motion.

  • It’s more effective to write 200 words every day than it is to write 1000 words once a week
  • We’re better off practicing an instrument for 15 minutes every day than we are an hour once a week.