Tomorrow, I’m going to change my life. I’m going to wake up at 3am, meditate, do yoga, journal, practice gratitude, run, lift weights, read, work on a hobby, start a side business…then off to work. During the day I’ll be nice to everyone I meet, positive, confident and more assertive, intermittent fast until 7pm, eat only raw fruit and vegetables, then in bed by 8pm.
Pretty good day but how long do you think it’ll last?
We often try to change everything at once, and it may succeed for a short while, but ultimately it fails and we go back to our old ways. Change always seems like such a big thing, but it doesn’t have to be. Introducing…
The 1% Rule
The 1% rule is really simple: just try to get 1% better everyday.
You can apply it to all areas of your life. But it requires you to take a long term view of change. Don’t worry about radically changing everything, just make small changes continuously.
Over time the changes will be significant. If you got 1% better every day, in a year’s time you’ll be 365% better.
What makes this so great is that 1% is easy to achieve and sustainable.
But what makes this so hard is that we don’t see the results immediately. With our culture of instant gratification we want everything now. But you can’t go to the gym once and expect to get wash-board abs. You have to go again and again and push yourself a little more each time.
Be the Tortoise
It’s like the fable of the ‘Tortoise and the Hare’. The Tortoise and the Hare agree to race each other. But the hare is faster and overly confident of winning, so it stops during the race and falls asleep.
The tortoise moves very slowly but it never stops and finally overtakes the sleeping Hare and wins the race. The moral of the story: slow and steady wins the race.
Be the tortoise.
Just Keep Trying
Don’t take the 1% rule too literal. Never ending growth is unsustainable, and we all experience set backs and can lose progress. Some days we may never be able to get 1% better and this is fine. Don’t get discouraged or disheartened.
The most important thing is the trying. It is the act of turning up every day and trying to get a little bit better. You may not notice the change in yourself, but others may start to.
How can you be 1% better today?
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