Atomic Habits

Atomic Habits

This is the Summary of the book “Atomic Habits” by James Clear.  If we’d like to transform our lives, we’re told to think large, make huge adjustments, or maybe even cross continents. But how do we achieve significant transformations with just a few changes to our daily routines? We all tend to underestimate the value of a single action and underestimate the potential of small, consistent improvements over a long period of time.

 The real power of change originates from the cumulative effect of hundreds of tiny choices or habits that, over time, accumulate to yield amazing results that transform the way we live, our behaviors, and our identities.

How small changes can make a big difference

In the book “Atomic Habits”. It’s an exploration of the potential of and process of making positive habits and breaking the bad habits with examples of sports business and education as well as research of neuroscience and psychology. The book discusses the science as well as the practical consequences of small routines and small modifications that can result in life-changing outcomes and allow us to live happier, healthier life and be more successful.

There are basically four major insights from this book which we’ll be discussing each one in turn. We’ll discuss the impact of 1% change over time, secondly the reason we should ignore goals and instead focus on systems and not goals. Thirdly, we need to discuss the outcomes, not the identity. Finally, we’ll discuss what our friend James refers to as the four fundamental principles of behavior change, so firstly, why does 1% matter? This is about compounding power… Compounding is incredibly effective both in a positive and negative way when it is left to grow over time

Power of Compounding

If we are able to improve 1% each day for the year, we’ll be 37 times better than the time we’re done, but If we’re getting one percent worse every day over the course of a year, we’ll drop to nearly zero. As James writes in his book, Atomic habits. The compound interest of self-improvement. Self-improvement strategies don’t seem to be a significant difference in a single day, but the effect over time may be a huge one. We do not often consider the tiny changes that make a difference since it can take so long for us to observe the effect it’s something I struggle with and I believe this can be said for everyone as we’re so tuned in our the modern world to be instantaneous that it’s really difficult to pay attention to things that can yield long-term benefits also, the slow pace of change also means that it’s easy to allow bad habits to take over, like competing poorly without exercising, and when we make these mistakes day after day, they’ll become larger troubles, are as James states in the book, time increases the gap between success and failure.

It will increase whatever you feed it. Good habits make time your friend while bad habits can make time your enemy. One of the other major factors in our boi James’s study of habits is what is known as “the latent plateau,” capacity which seems like a lot of fancy and nifty habits tend to not be a factor until they cross a crucial threshold at which we anticipate progress to be linear, but the most important element the problem with any compounding process is the fact that the results are delayed, which leads to the initial disappointment valley in which we don’t feel that we’re moving forward since the results do not follow the linear path we’d like and we give up since we’re not seeing the results we want, however as we can see in the graph, it does take time to develop a habit that allows self-improvement’s compound interest to be a reality and deliver astonishing results over time.

Goal Setting

The second point of this book is that you should sabotage goals and concentrate on systems rather than goals. James points out four major issues in goal-setting. First, winners and losers share the same objectives every Olympian is looking for the gold medal. Every candidate is looking for a job, so it’s not the end objective that makes people different further, achieving a goal is only a temporary shift. Sure, I’ll be able to snare the motivational energy and get myself motivated to tidy my home, but what if I continue my waste-man routines and habits that caused the room to start becoming messy in the beginning.

 I’m going to end up with a mess in a few days similar to once we have achieved an objective, we just alter our lives for the time we see the results, but rather what we require to change is the system that causes these outcomes in the first place. Thirdly James asserts that goals limit our happiness. In this argument, there’s an implicit assumption to support this.

If I’ve achieved my goal I’ll feel satisfied, and we continue to put off happiness until the next step finally, goals will determine our chances for long-term success. There’s a great quote from this article. The purpose of creating goals is to win the game. The reason for creating systems is to keep playing the game.

Aim to get high

You’re playing a game in every sport, the aim is to get the highest scores on the board at the conclusion of the game. However, it’s not a good idea to look for the whole game at the scoreboard as they won’t assist anyone in any way. So even if you did not pay attention to the score all the time and focused only on improving your process or using a more effective method or plan, you will get the top score.

Bill Walsh II was the Super Bowl-winning head coach for the San Francisco 49ers he had this quote: “The score will take care of itself. I believe this is probably true for the majority of measurement and tracking, so after we’ve seen one of the wisest Ammar the most important thing to remember is number three is another quotation from the book. It is that identity alteration will be an aspect of the North Star of habit change and we’ve seen outcomes that affect the outside world. That are changing and the processes that are associated with our routines and systems and lastly our identity that is determined by our beliefs.

 We are driven by the outcome instead of identity result however, as our son James states, the most powerful type of intrinsic motivation occurs when behavior becomes part of our identity. When we tackle problems on the basis of results and outcomes. We are able to solve them only temporarily, however, to resolve problems over the long-term on a system level, we have to alter our identity. At this point, we need to change our identity.

Habits of Eating

The first time when I read it, it resonated with me. I’ve struggled to eat healthily and avoid working out over the past several years. Before I started to use an outcomes-based approach to looking at it. I thought I’d like to rid myself of belly fat, consequently, I’m going to adhere to the low-carb diet of Tim Ferriss and thus become a healthier person, but after having read the book, I now take a more personal identity-based way of looking

In this way, I try to imagine in my mind that I am healthy, so to be a Healthy person, I need to do exercise daily and eat healthy food. And then someday I’ll be like Zac Efron. We’ll look into that and lastly, point number four, at this point, you’re thinking cool, I’m sold on the concept of establishing habits that are useful. I’m convinced the focus is on small changes over a lengthy period of time.

Systems instead of goals, but how do we build these habits? How can we get over the issue? Well, I’m glad that you asked as we can actually divide the process of forming habits into 4 stages. The first stage is the response to the cue craving. The signal trigger the brain to trigger an action. When we are craving, it provides motivational power. The result is the habit or action that we do with the goal of rewarding the final objective.

Atomic Habits

Atomic Habits

4 laws of Behaviour

  1. Make it obvious

These four factors trigger an urge to respond and reward, which leads to what James Thayer describes as the four laws of behavior. Modifying the first law is evident and involves designing our environments in response to our signals I’ve applied this concept to my own life the other day, actually. Over the past year, I’ve been taking a tablet known as finasteride in order to stop my hair loss. In the past, people have committed the same videos where hair is thicker.

Thank you, but I realized that I am a vitamin D deficient person too since I spend too long at a computer and I don’t leave my house. So I purchased the vitamin D tablets. However, I would forget to take them. Then I realized that the reason I didn’t remember to take them was due to the fact that they were on the opposite part of my kitchen from my finasteride pills that I took every day in a regular manner and what I did was move those vitamin D pills to the other side.

From the kitchen and I am able to see them on my finasteride so I have both tablets in the evening, so it’s a small change that has created this habit pretty quickly. The basic principle of environmental design generally is that you should place fewer steps between yourself and your good behavior and more between you and the negative ones. Think about the impact that living in within a space that exposes you to signs of your positive behavior and reduces the triggers for your habits that are negative. It’s kind of like you’re being gently pushed in the right direction every day.

  1. Make it attractive

The second law is to make it appealing that is connected to the desired part that is part of our habit loop. It seeks to capitalize on our knowledge of dopamine since humans are all driven by the expectation of rewards thus making the habit attractive can make it easier to stick with the same ones.

  1. Make it easy

The third law of physics is to create a simple experience and the primary goal here is to minimize friction and prepare our environment to encourage the behaviors we’d like to establish I have a phrase that finds appealing that was a thought I had, but I’m sure that I’ve not read it.

Then, I didn’t mention the source. But the truth says that friction can be the strongest energy source in our universe. I’ve experienced this often in my own life. Whatever I can do to lessen the friction in order to make an important thing a bit easier will pay off in the end like having a guitar right near me. Having the instrument right near my desk is that I’m my default method of procrastination. When I’m, decreasing friction makes it much more likely to perform the task.  

  1. Make it immediately

The fourth law of physics is to make it immediately satisfying, our brains have evolved to prioritize immediate rewards over those that take time and the most fundamental rule of behavior modification is that what is immediately rewarded, is repeated and the immediate punishment is not avoided. We get short-term bursts in dopamine moving.

Though McDonald’s drive-through or scrolling through Instagram leads us to be more likely to fall into these negative habits in order to create better habits. James advises us to strive to associate some sort of instant gratification to ensure that we can make the habit instantly satisfying. After I read the book, I realized that I had to make this going to the gym more satisfying in the moment, when I go to exercise after work, I’ll exercise and then I’ll jump in the pool, would you would like to jump in for a couple of minutes to have fun, and then head to the spa to take a break and read for around 20 minutes. This is really luxurious and luxurious, but I like having the activities scheduled following my visit to the gym will make the entire process of attending the gym much more satisfying, making me more likely to return which is why combining these rules and their contraindications we’ve come up with this graph that


From the book, we’d like to make sure our best habits are situated on the left-hand side of the spectrum in order to make it easy to identify and enjoyable. We would like to work towards making our bad habits harder by making the signals visible, the actions difficult and unattractive, and the reward not satisfying in an ideal world. We don’t look at our habits or make plans for long-term changes when we begin a new routine like going to the gym.

The greatest strength of atomic habits is the importance it puts on systems rather than goals and identities, rather than results and small actions instead of radical change. Is no precise answer to the time it takes to create a habit since habits aren’t a line to cross, but rather an attitude to live? The most important thing to keep in mind is that small-scale habits build the atomic habit may be small but when they are combined and over time, they are able to.

You have the power to bring incredible changes to your lives.

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 Atomic Habits

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