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The Curse of Tippecanoe
The Curse of Tippecanoe
February 15, 2024

“Atomic Habits”: Review and Key Points

Previously Published Jan. 5, 2023
Atom - illustration on a white background
Petr Vaclavek – Fotolia
Atom – illustration on a white background
By now, you’ve probably seen or heard of the book Atomic Habits. After all, James Clear sold over 3 million copies of this book worldwide. Looking at its unique perspective, it’s hard not to see why.
Atomic Habits is an insightful self-help book that encourages you to strive to be the best version of yourself and teaches you exactly how to do so. The author explains seemingly obvious psychology ideas and applies it to habit formation and, in turn, how to achieve goals. This book is definitely worth reading fully, but here are my key takeaways.
  1. Making small changes to your daily life has a highly impactful outcome. It gives you a sense of control and confidence that you were able to accomplish something, even if it’s small. This could be making your bed as soon as you get up in the morning, or making small steps in a new hobby you’ve always wanted to try.
  2. Clear describes why setting goals won’t help you become the ideal version of yourself, reasoning that establishing systems is the best way to become the version of yourself that is equipped to carry out your goals in the long run. For example, if you want to practice yoga or meditation daily, place your yoga mat closeby; this way it’s easy to get started. If you want to solidify this habit even further, tie it to another habit: if you make your bed daily, for example, tell yourself that you’ll meditate or practice yoga right after you make your bed.
  3. Think about how a successful person would approach accomplishing your goal. Then embody them.
  4. Identify habits that identify with your identity. Let’s say you think of yourself as a musician. The more evidence you have to prove to yourself that you’re a musician, the more strongly you’ll believe it and work on it. Evidence in this case would be practicing your instrument and performing at a recital or event. As you accumulate evidence, your self image changes. Being a musician is now tied with your identity, so you will reinforce that identity by practicing.
  5. Self-awareness is key. If you aren’t aware of your habits, you won’t be able to improve them. Once you identify your habits, evaluate whether or not you think they’re helpful to you.
  6. Set intentions. When trying to implement a new habit, set an implementation intention: when situation x arises, I will perform y. Write down the time and place you will accomplish the task.
“Atomic Habits” empowered me to work towards becoming the best version of myself. If you’re looking to become a more successful and productive person, this is your sign to pick this book up!
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Aditi Singasani, Co-Editor-in-Chief

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