If you are here reading this article, I assume you have been in the personal development space for a while now.
Everybody wants to get better. You know your problems – stress, being overweight, waking up late in the morning, not handling money well, etc.
You have been struggling with these for months or maybe years. So, you get your hands dirty, start watching Youtube videos and reading books by personal development experts. Then you decide you will start next Monday. You will exercise for 30 minutes. Meditate for 20 minutes. Become a member of the 5 am club. And then also start working on your side hustle.
Seems extravagant and the right solution to all your problems. But the bigger problem is – it doesn’t work that way.
Chances are – if you have not been engaging in these habits in the past 3 months or so, you are not going to practice them even now.
And don’t say this time is different! If you had enough willpower, you might be doing the right things already.
After all, you knew all the while that a habit of exercising daily can improve your overall health, make you more brainy, energetic, and improve your self-esteem. Yet, you couldn’t make it a habit.
Most probably, you have already failed a couple of times on your journey of self-improvement.
So, stop this cycle by avoiding taking big leaps that don’t last more than a week.
Going to the gym for 20 hours one week won’t help you build muscle. It will only make you sore. Spread the 20 hours to a month and you are sure to get some results.
That’s right, every good thing takes time to flourish. Plus, it’s the consistency that counts. Much more than what you do or how you do.
But being consistent is not easy either. The solution is to not take big bold steps. Just get 1% better each day. How to do that? Read on to know!
6 Steps to Getting 1% Better Every Day
- Analyze your situation, find one to three things in your life to improve.
You can’t simply start working on any random good habit. It’s stupid to work on waking up early every morning when you are a night owl. At least not until you have fixed the other problematic areas of your life.
So, analyze your life’s problems. See what you need to work on. See which new good habits will make you happier than the others.
You can consider the Pareto principle to help you make the decision. It states that about 20% of our efforts can bring us 80% of the results and 80% of efforts bring the rest 20%. So, pick a habit that is going to improve your life by a big percentage like 80 without much grinding.
For example, if you do not meditate already, you can pick a habit of meditating daily. Not only will this habit help you with stress management, but it will also help you be in check of your emotions. It will prevent you from emotional eating and getting angry at your loved ones. See, it can not only help your mental health but your relationships and physical health as well. Picking something as beneficial as this can bring remarkable rewards.
Also, make sure not to pick more than three things to work on. You don’t want to overwhelm yourself enough to give up on all the goodness you deserve.
- Start really small.
Once you have picked about three habits to work on, you will be very excited to work on them.
But do not let this excitement make you take big leaps into the habits. Take baby steps.
For example, if you want to make a habit of reading every day, read one page or even one line of a book today.
If you want to journal, write just one line on the first day. If you want to exercise for 30 minutes daily. Start with one minute. Yes, that’s really small and may seem insignificant. But you will thank yourself after 30 days because you will be far from giving up and losing this time.
- Increase it by 1% every day.
After starting small on day one, increase your efforts by 1% the next day.
For example, if you did one push-up for your exercise habit on day one, practice two push-ups on day two. Three on day three, four on day four, and so on.
The same goes for any other habit. What you start for one minute on day one, will turn to 30 minutes in a month.
Fun fact – Did you know people who read 30 minutes every day live longer?
- Do not get impatient and give up.
You must always remember that getting 1% better is a slow way of reaching your goals. Other methods, no matter how fast, may not be as effective as this one. So, make being slow and consistent your mantra.
Don’t search for any other magic bullet that may cut your time and efforts. What you are taking action on right now – the 1% better approach – is a magic bullet in itself.
The best way to move forward is not to waste time looking for better roads, but to keep going on the same path slow and steady.
- When you reach your goal – don’t stop.
Let’s say you reached your financial goal, your weight goal, are peaceful most of the time, and have solved all your problems with the first 4 steps.
What now? Most people stop their habits once they reach their goals. And then they experience what you might have learned in grade 8 – Newton’s first law.
The law states that an object at rest (you after achieving your goals) stays at rest unless an external force (read effort) is applied. That’s right!
Your life will stop moving forward. It might move backward, as you will start falling into your bad habits. You might get into debt again. May become overweight for the second time. And becoming stressed in this century, doesn’t take much, does it?
Stopping after you have reached your goals will eventually make you fall back into the negativity you just came out from. So, just keep doing what you were doing. Reached a stage where you read 30 minutes daily? Continue that.
- Keep looking for ways to improve your life 1% better.
Last, yet a super essential step, keep looking for areas of your life you can improve.
Want to improve relationships? Start spending a little more time with your loved ones. Want to improve health after achieving your weight goal? Try challenging yourself with mini-marathons. Want to step up the career ladder? Start with small webinars and then take new courses to up your skills.
Look out for any aspect of your life you can improve and then take the same 5 steps to reach your goals.
Now, you know the right steps to get 1% better every day. Tell us, what aspect of your life do you intend to improve right now?
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