31 Quotes from Atomic Habits book by James Clear



Hello friends. This post is a collection of quotes from the book Atomic Habits: Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results by James Clear.

Atomic Habits has been described as a book about practical strategies to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results.

Maybe there are people who can achieve incredible success overnight. I don't know any of them, and I'm certainly not one of them. There wasn't one defining moment on my journey from medically induced coma to Academic All-American; there were many. It was a gradual evolution, a long series of small wins and tiny breakthroughs. The only way I made progress - the only choice I had - was to start small. - Atomic Habits, Introduction

We all deal with setbacks but in the long run, the quality of our lives often depends on the quality of our habits. With the same habits, you'll end up with the same results. But with better habits, anything is possible. - Atomic Habits, Introduction

Changes that seem small and unimportant at first will compound into remarkable results if you're willing to stick with them for years. - Atomic Habits, Introduction

You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

Habits are like the atoms of our lives. Each one is a fundamental unit that contributes to your overall improvement. At first, these tiny routines seem insignificant, but soon they build on each other and fuel bigger wins that multiply to a degree that far outweighs the cost of their initial investment. They are both small and mighty. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

The purpose of setting goals is to win the game. The purpose of building systems is to continue playing the game. True long-term thinking is goal-less thinking. It's not about any single accomplishment. It is about the cycle of endless refinement and continuous improvement. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

We think we need to change our results, but the results are not the problem. What we really need to change are the systems that cause those results. When you solve problems at the results level, you only solve them temporarily. In order to improve for good, you need to solve problems at the systems level. Fix the inputs and the outputs will fix themselves. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

Breakthrough moments are often the result of many previous actions, which build up the potential required to unleash a major change. This pattern shows up everywhere. Cancer spends 80 percent of its life undetectable, then takes over the body in months. Bamboo can barely be seen for the first five years as it builds extensive root systems underground before exploding ninety feet into the air within six weeks. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

Your outcomes are a lagging measure of your habits. Your net worth is a lagging measure of your financial habits. Your weight is a lagging measure of your eating habits. Your knowledge is a lagging measure of your learning habits. Your clutter is a lagging measure of your cleaning habits. You get what you repeat. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement. The same way that money multiplies through compound interest, the effects of your habits multiply as you repeat them. They seem to make little difference on any given day and yet the impact they deliver over the months and years can be enormous. It is only when looking back two, five, or perhaps ten years later that the value of good habits and the cost of bad ones becomes strikingly apparent. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

The difference a tiny improvement can make over time is astounding. Here's how the math works out: if you can get 1 percent better each day for one year, you'll end up thirty-seven times better by the time you're done. Conversely, if you get 1 percent worse each day for one year, you'll decline nearly down to zero. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

It is so easy to overestimate the importance of one defining moment and underestimate the value of making small improvements on a daily basis. Too often, we convince ourselves that massive success requires massive action. Whether it is losing weight, building a business, writing a book, winning a championship, or achieving any other goal, we put pressure on ourselves to make some earth-shattering improvement that everyone will talk about. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 1

Progress requires unlearning. Becoming the best version of yourself requires you to continuously edit your beliefs, and to upgrade and expand your identity. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 2

Ultimately, your habits matter because they help you become the type of person you wish to be. They are the channel through which you develop your deepest beliefs about yourself. Quite literally, you become your habits. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 2

True behavior change is identity change. You might start a habit because of motivation, but the only reason you'll stick with one is that it becomes part of your identity. Anyone can convince themselves to visit the gym or eat healthy once or twice, but if you don’t shift the belief behind the behavior, then it is hard to stick with long-term changes. Improvements are only temporary until they become part of who you are. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 2

Habits do not restrict freedom. They create it. In fact, the people who don't have their habits handled are often the ones with the least amount of freedom. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 3

When you have your habits dialed in and the basics of life are handled and done, your mind is free to focus on new challenges and master the next set of problems. Building habits in the present allows you to do more of what you want in the future. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 3

Environment is the invisible hand that shapes human behavior. Despite our unique personalities, certain behaviors tend to arise again and again under certain environmental conditions. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 6

One of the most effective things you can do to build better habits is to join a culture where your desired behavior is the normal behavior. New habits seem achievable when you see others doing them every day. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 7

Your current habits have been internalized over the course of hundreds, if not thousands, of repetitions. New habits require the same level of frequency. You need to string together enough successful attempts until the behavior is firmly embedded in your mind and you cross the Habit Line. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 11

The truth is, a habit must be established before it can be improved. If you can’t learn the basic skill of showing up, then you have little hope of mastering the finer details. Instead of trying to engineer a perfect habit from the start, do the easy thing on a more consistent basis. You have to standardize before you can optimize. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 13

Sometimes success is less about making good habits easy and more about making bad habits hard. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 14

Every habit produces multiple outcomes across time. Unfortunately, these outcomes are often misaligned. With our bad habits, the immediate outcome usually feels good, but the ultimate outcome feels bad. With good habits, it is the reverse: the immediate outcome is unenjoyable, but the ultimate outcome feels good. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 15

The mark of whether you are made for a task is not whether you love it but whether you can handle the pain of the task easier than most people. When are you enjoying yourself while other people are complaining? The work that hurts you less than it hurts others is the work you were made to do. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 18

When you can't win by being better, you can win by being different. [...] A good player works hard to win the game everyone else is playing. A great player creates a new game that favors their strengths and avoids their weaknesses. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 18

Boiling water will soften a potato but harden an egg. You can't control whether you're a potato or an egg, but you can decide to play a game where it's better to be hard or soft. If you can find a more favorable environment, you can transform the situation from one where the odds are against you to one where they are in your favor. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 18

Our genes do not eliminate the need for hard work. They clarify it. They tell us what to work hard on. Once we realize our strengths, we know where to spend our time and energy. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 18

Until you work as hard as those you admire, don’t explain away their success as luck. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 18

Boredom is perhaps the greatest villain on the quest for self-improvement. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 18

I can guarantee that if you manage to start a habit and keep sticking to it, there will be days when you feel like quitting. When you start a business, there will be days when you don't feel like showing up. When you're at the gym, there will be sets that you don't feel like finishing. When it's time to write, there will be days that you don't feel like typing. But stepping up when it's annoying or painful or draining to do so, that's what makes the difference between a professional and an amateur. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 19

The only way to become excellent is to be endlessly fascinated by doing the same thing over and over. You have to fall in love with boredom. - Atomic Habits, Chapter 19