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4 Self-Improvement Myths That May Be Holding You Back

Mimicry and comparisons

Self-improvement doesn't come from mimicry and comparing ourselves with others.

Focus on getting better than you were yesterday and living up to your own potential and aspirations, not somebody else’s. 

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4 Self-Improvement Myths That May Be Holding You Back

4 Self-Improvement Myths That May Be Holding You Back

https://hbr.org/2018/02/4-self-improvement-myths-that-may-be-holding-you-back

hbr.org

4

Key Ideas

Peak performance

Performing at the top doesn't mean consistent peak performance.

You should expect some variability in your performance. Your path is not going to be linear.

Singular grand strategies

They don't work, because there is no one single way for anybody to improve.

Singular grand strategies seldom work because they don’t account for exigencies that emerge along the way. Adaptability is also important in the path to self-growth.

Setting goals

Goal setting sometimes inhibits self-improvement: the amount of thinking you put into something can decrease the amount of time you spend doing it.

Once you begin to work toward your goals, focus on what brings you joy about the activity itself.

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Re-reading and highlighting

Both of these study strategies are relatively ineffective. Passively reading the same text over and over again won’t do much for recall unless it’s spaced out over time. 

Different learning styles

Systematic studies of learning styles have consistently found no evidence or very weak evidence to support the idea that matching the material to a student’s learning style is more effective.

Right or left-brained

There is no conclusive evidence that people preferentially use the left or right hemisphere.

Certain functions are processed more by one region of the brain than others, and this is known as lateralization. But we all use our entire brain equally.

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5 hours of sleep is enough

Habitual sleep deprivation is associated with diverse and far-reaching health effects and none of them is good.

Between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night are recommended. You can get used to l...

Watching Television before bed

Cellphones, tablets, and all kinds of personal electronics are not a good idea when you’re getting ready for bed.

Researchers have increasingly focused on “blue light” emitted by screens and its effect on sleep and negative sleep-related health outcomes.

It doesn’t matter when you sleep

Our bodies tend to follow a natural rhythm of wakefulness and sleep that is attuned to sunrise and sunset for a reason.

While some missed sleep here and there isn’t necessarily a big deal, shifting your sleep schedule long term isn’t healthy.

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Getting Sufficient Sleep

When you’re consistently not getting enough sleep, you get used to feeling tired, and your body adapts to function on that amount of sleep. But this doesn’t mean that you’re performing at you...

8 Hours Of Sleep

Although it is recommended that healthy adults should aim for seven to nine hours of sleep, everyone is different. There are people who need just three to four hours to stay alert. 

If you’re not sure how many hours of sleep you need on a daily basis, experimentation is the best way to go. Try waking up without an alarm and figure out what your natural wake-up time is. Observe how adding or subtracting one hour of sleep impacts your productivity.

“Catch Up” Sleep On Weekends

The harm of bingeing on sleep on Saturday and Sunday is that it makes it hard to get a full and well-constructed night of sleep on Sunday night, which then sends us off into the workweek on the wrong foot.

If you don’t try to wake up at a similar time at the weekend, it is similar to giving yourself jet lag every weekend.

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