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This Simple Action is All it Takes to Stick to Your Goals

Your average pace

According to James Clear, your average pace is what pushes you enough to make progress, but not so much that it becomes unsustainable. It will produce long-term results and will turn these actions into habits over time.

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This Simple Action is All it Takes to Stick to Your Goals

This Simple Action is All it Takes to Stick to Your Goals

https://theascent.pub/this-simple-action-is-all-it-takes-to-stick-to-your-goals-b31aba051cdd

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Key Ideas

Aversion against discomfort

People value their comfort zone more than anything else, even money.  We fall in love with outcomes, but taking actions means going out of our comfort zone. And that’s one thing we don’t want to compromise on at all. So, when work get tougher and our efforts decline for various reasons, we tend to give up. 

Abandoning goals midway

  • You have to work twice as hard to get back to your original rhythm, each time you lose momentum, 
  • The joy you felt when imagined the goal achieved turns into guilt and disappointment.

Your average pace

According to James Clear, your average pace is what pushes you enough to make progress, but not so much that it becomes unsustainable. It will produce long-term results and will turn these actions into habits over time.

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15 minutes a day for making changes
15 minutes a day for making changes

Devote at least 15 minutes a day to your change.

Even if it’s just a walk around your neighborhood, one less cigarette, reading an inspirational article, do it. Mix it up, too. No one wants t...

Fork over the truth

Behavior modification teaches us that we repeat behaviors that make us feel good. What’s your payoff for not changing? 

Until the goal becomes larger than the payoff, you’re always going to choose feeling good over feeling uncomfortable.

Set realistic goals

Start with one behavior at a time.

Instead of concentrating on losing 20 pounds in 20 days, for example, make a goal to simply begin by eating five fruits and vegetables a day.  

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Force yourself to do things

Our mind has muscles. It memorizes patterns. By doing this over and over, you're building your willpower and self-discipline. 

Forcing yourself to do things...

"People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily."

"People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily."
Focus on the emotional reward

Focus on the feeling you feel after doing something that you know is good for you.

  • The adrenaline rush.
  • The feeling of being fit and healthy.
  • The relief you feel after having finished a big project.
  • The pride you gain from an accomplishment.
  • The confidence you feel after having faced your fear.

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Common budgeting mistakes
  1. Not Tracking Expenses: it's impossible to stick to your budget if you don't know where your money is going.
  2. Buying on Impulse: Impulse buying is expensive.&nb...
Tracking expenses
One of the ugly truths about budgeting is that when you keep track of your expenses, it’s painfully clear when you’ve gone off track. 

Write it down when you’ve gone over your budget. The negativity you feel will help prevent you from overspending more or doing it again. Just think of this step as damage control.

Being frugal and miserable

If you try to deprive yourself too much, you’ll binge later and throw all your hard work out the window. 

A spending binge can set you back far more than treating yourself occasionally, so go for the occasional minor splurge. Just keep your treats within your spending limits and you’ll be fine.

Survivorship bias refers to our tendency to focus on the winners while completely forgetting about the losers who are employing the same strategy.


Loss aversion refers to our tendency to strongly prefer avoiding losses over acquiring gains.

Loss aversion refers to our tendency to strongly prefer avoiding losses over acquiring gains.

Availability Heuristic appears when we assume that the examples coming to mind easily are the most prevalent.

Availability Heuristic appears when we assume that the examples coming to mind easily are the most prevalent.

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The action-intention gap

The difference between a great idea and great execution. This is where most of our struggles, failures and frustrations originate.

The majority of our struggles in life come down to a ...

How to Close Your Action-Intention Gap
  1. If you want to have a chance of improving your life, you need to clear about what you intend to do.
  2. Align your intentions with the kind of things you can actually do. 
  3. See how your intentions are working out,  how well you’re following through and make adjustments.
The Paleo Diet

The Paleo Diet is an effort to go back to eating how we’re biologically designed to eat, allowing us to tap into our genetic potential and start living healthier immediately.

Lose weight on the Paleo Diet
  1. Eat fewer calories than you burn every day.
  2. Eat mostly real food if you want to be healthy.
  3. Do those two things consistently for a decade to KEEP the weight off.

When you only eat real food and avoid all unhealthy food, you’re more likely than not going to run a caloric deficit – and thus lose weight.

Eat the following:
  • Meat – GRASS-FED, not grain-fed. 
  • Fowl – Chicken, duck, hen, turkey.
  • Fish – Wild fish, as mercury and other toxins can be an issue in farmed fish
  • Eggs – Omega-3 enriched cage free eggs.
  • Vegetables – As long as they’re not deep-fried, eat as many as you want.
  • Oils – Olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil – think natural.
  • Fruits – Fruits have natural sugar, and can be higher in calories, so limit if you’re trying to lose weight.
  • Nuts – High in calories, so they’re good for a snack only.
  • Tubers – Sweet potatoes and yams. Higher in calories and carbs.

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Struggling To Build Healthy Habits
  • We tend to bite off more than we can chew, go too fast too soon, and then get overwhelmed too quickly.
  • We’re conditioned these days to expect and receive instant gratification.
Your “Big Why”

As you’re determining the habits or resolutions you’re trying to set, make the habit part of a bigger cause that’s worth the struggle.

You’re not just going to the gym, you’re building a new body that you’re not ashamed of so you can start dating again.

Healthy Habit Building 101

There are 3 parts to a good or bad habit: Cue (what triggers the action), Routine (the action itself), Reward (the positive result because of the action).

You have trained your brain to take a cue (you see a doughnut), anticipate a reward (a sugar high), and make the behavior automatic (nom that donut). 

Compare that to a cue (you see your running shoes), anticipate a reward (a runner’s high), and make the behavior automatic (go for a run!).

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The "Boxed Set Approach"

Our lives are often referred to as a stream or a journey, yet our minds more naturally divide life into episodes or seasons, like a DVD boxed set.

The Boxed Set approach helps us to think of ...

Temporal landmarks

If you want to re-ignite your hunger and focus for a given objective, pay attention to any "temporal landmarks" between now and the completion time of the goal. Use public events, birthdays or planned breaks as episode dividers in the path ahead.

Arrange a book deadline for after your birthday or a weight-loss target for when you get back from a conference.

Before mapping out

If your goals are unrealistic or too daunting, seeing them lying ahead in a future Season could backfire, damaging your morale and pushing you to procrastinate.

Keep this technique for when you're confident this isn't a risk.

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2 mindsets of building wealth
  • Spending mindset: People who stay poor or middle class see money as something to be spent.
  • Investing mindset: People who become rich see...
People rely too much on self-discipline

 ....and eschew forming useful habits. Instead, they set unrealistic drastic goals that and then become frustrated when they make little to no progress towards them. 

Goals sound much sexier in our head than habits
  • Goals: there’s a clear image of a certain result in our head and that gets us more excited in the moment;
  • Habits: are long-term and repetitive - they seem boring. And there’s no clear image one can imagine for “going to the gym every morning for a year”.

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To accumulate wealth...
  • You need to make it. You need a long-term source of income that's enough to cover your basics.
  • You need to save it. You need t...
Making Enough Earned Money

Earned income comes from what you "do for a living."

  • Consider what you enjoy as you will be more likely to succeed financially.
  • Consider what you're good at and see how you can use those talents to earn a living.
  • Consider what will meet your financial expectations.
  • Consider how to get there. Determine the education requirements, etc.

Evaluate your income situation annually.

Saving Enough of It

To ensure that you save enough money, your wants should not exceed your budget.

  • Track your spending for at least a month.
  • Trim the fat. Break down your wants and needs.
  • Adjust according to your changing needs.
  • Build your cushion. Aim to save around three to six months' worth of living expenses.
  • Contribute to a retirement fund and try to get the maximum your employer is matching.

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