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The science behind making a change that lasts | The JotForm Blog

The compound effect

Sustained momentum toward a singular goal creates a compound effect. 

This means that consistent, incremental changes can result in fundamental changes over time.

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The science behind making a change that lasts | The JotForm Blog

The science behind making a change that lasts | The JotForm Blog

https://www.jotform.com/blog/dont-break-the-chain/

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Key Ideas

"Don’t break the chain"

This is a productivity and motivation technique used and popularised by Jerry Seinfeld.

Each day you complete your task, you put an X in your calendar. Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. The temptation to skip a day will be weaker because you'll enjoy seeing that chain form, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt.

Momentum vs Friction

Not breaking the chain leads to momentum, the force that allows something to grow stronger or faster as time passes. But like everything else, momentum has an equal and opposite reaction.

Friction is the resistance caused when one object is moving at a different rate than another. Friction the enemy of momentum, the force that breaks the chain.

The compound effect

Sustained momentum toward a singular goal creates a compound effect. 

This means that consistent, incremental changes can result in fundamental changes over time.

Gary Keller and Jay Papasan

Gary Keller and Jay Papasan

“Where I’d had huge success, I had narrowed my concentration to one thing, and where my success varied, my focus had, too … Success is sequential, not simultaneous.”

This endowed progress effect

This shows that a person who feels like they're making progress toward a goal is more likely to complete it and faster than a person who feels they’re starting from scratch.

Creating momentum

  1. Start by defining your one goal, the purpose of your chain. Schedule uninterrupted times into your day for it.
  2. Pursue your chain using whatever tools make sense to you: you can choose to use a digital calendar or an analog one.
  3. Create outcome-based requirements for every link you add to the chain.
  4. Set reasonable boundaries that keep you on track, not scare you away.

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