Atomic Habits, by James Clear

The Author:

James Clear is an American writer, received his degree in biomechanics in 2008.  He started his career as a performance coach for athletes and executives and then got into writing and public speaking in 2012.  His work has featured in The New York Times, Forbes and Time.

The Book:

I really enjoyed reading this book.  It is an easy and enjoyable read with helpful diagrams and include stories and analogies – current to our time.  He explains in an-easy-to-understand way how we can build new habits and break bad habits that can be applied to personal and professional development.

What I like most about the book:

There are some practical ideas in the book that can be easily taken, applied to my reality and implemented immediately that will help me focus on the right things that will enable positive behaviour change in a simple and easy way.

My key take-outs

I’ve personally taken 9 lessons for my personal and professional development that I will be applying into my day-to-day life:

  1. BE PATIENT:  There is no such thing as overnight success. A lot of work and persistence is what creates sustainable success
  2. CHECK MY DIRECTION:  Are things going where I want it to go.  Do I have bad habits that will end up in e.g. bad health?  Time can be your enemy or your ally.  There is momentum of change everyday.
  3. FOCUS ON THE PROCESS:  I will be focussing on identity based habits and the process of creating evidence of achieving who I want to be.
  4. CONSIDER CAUSE AND EFFECT:  Focussing on why I have a craving for something and what I need to satisfy will inform healthier choices and in turn healthier habits
  5. BE SPECIFIC:  I will specify what I will be doing differently instead of vague statements of what I want.  This will help enforce consistent action which in time will become automatic
  6. POSITIVE MINDSET:  We can find evidence for whatever mindset we choose.  Framing the way I say things can make a difference in motivation.
  7. ENVIRONMENT MATTERS:  We shape our habits based on those around us.  Social environment could be influencing our habits positively or negatively.  Physical environment can be set up to make habits easy to build.  If we can see something, we are more likely to pick it up and use it.
  8. TAKE ACTION:  Just jump in and do it.  Our brains will follow and eventually consistent habits will be automated. It doesn’t have to be perfect, just start and do something.  Doing something is better than doing nothing.
  9. STANDARDISE BEFORE YOU OPTIMISE:  Break habit making or breaking into sizeable chunks.  Start simple and get used to it, then take it up a level and do the next step until you’ve standardised it and so on.


    I’ve learnt a lot from this book and invite you to have a look at it.

    If you’re curious about the 9 lessons I’ve personally taken away from reading this book, and want to understand more about it, please get in touch.  I’d be happy to have a chat.