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Why We Should Aim for 1% Improvement Every Day Instead of Making New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s resolutions are a popular tradition for many people who want to start the year with a fresh slate and a clear vision of their goals. However, research shows that most resolutions fail within a few months, leaving people frustrated and discouraged. Why is it so hard to stick to our resolutions, and what can we do to make lasting changes in our lives?


One reason why resolutions fail is that they are often too vague, unrealistic, or overwhelming. For example, if your resolution is to lose weight, you may not have a specific plan on how to achieve that, or you may set a goal that is too ambitious for your current situation. This can lead to confusion, procrastination, or loss of motivation.


Another reason why resolutions fail is that they are based on an all-or-nothing mindset. You may think that you have to make drastic changes in your habits, routines, or behaviours, and that any slip-up means you have failed. This can create a lot of pressure and guilt, and make you feel like giving up altogether.


A better alternative to making resolutions is to adopt a 1% improvement mindset. This means that you focus on making small, incremental, and consistent changes in your life, rather than trying to overhaul everything at once. By aiming for 1% improvement every day, you can achieve remarkable results over time, without feeling overwhelmed or deprived.


The concept of 1% improvement is based on the idea of compound interest, which is the principle that a small amount of money invested regularly can grow exponentially over time. Similarly, a small change in your behaviour, repeated consistently, can lead to significant outcomes over time.

For example, if you want to read more books, you don’t have to set a goal of reading a book a week or a month. Instead, you can start by reading one page a day, and then gradually increase that amount as you get more comfortable. If you do this consistently, you will have read 365 pages in a year, which is equivalent to one or two books, depending on the length. And if you keep increasing your reading by 1% every day, you will have read even more books in the following years.


The benefits of 1% improvement are not limited to reading. You can apply this principle to any area of your life, such as fitness, nutrition, productivity, creativity, relationships, or personal growth. The key is to identify one small action that you can take every day to move you closer to your desired outcome, and then stick to it. Over time, these small actions will add up to big changes.

Some examples of 1% improvement actions are:

  • If you want to exercise more, start by doing one push-up a day, and then add one more every day.

  • If you want to eat healthier, start by adding one serving of vegetables to your plate, and then increase that amount every day.

  • If you want to be more productive, start by working on your most important task for 10 minutes, and then extend that time every day.

  • If you want to be more creative, start by writing one sentence a day, and then write more every day.

  • If you want to improve your relationships, start by saying one kind word to someone you care about, and then say more every day.

The beauty of 1% improvement is that it is simple, manageable, and adaptable. You can adjust your actions according to your circumstances, preferences, and goals. You can also track your progress and celebrate your achievements along the way. And most importantly, you can enjoy the process of improving yourself, rather than stressing over the outcome.

So, instead of making New Year’s resolutions that you may not keep, why not try the 1% improvement approach? You may be surprised by how much you can accomplish in a year, and how much you can grow as a person. Remember, small changes can make a big difference. All you need is to start today, and keep going.


So what small change could you make today?

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