Atomic Habits by James Clear – Book Review

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Success is the product of daily habits, not once in a lifetime transformations.

James Clear, Atomic Habits


Book: Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones.

Author: James Clear

Seems like most of the books I’ve reviewed are from a while back, but this one is certainly of the newer variety as it was published in late 2018.

If you’re trying to change certain aspects of your life but are struggling to find ways to do so, this is the book for you.

I just finished reading it and it had such a profound effect on how I see certain things that I decided to write an article titled “The One Question that Will Change the Rest of Your life.”

Yes, that’s how large of an impact I believe the teachings found in this book can have on your life.

There are only effective habits; that is, effective at solving problems. All habits serve you in some way, even the bad ones which is why you repeat them.

James Clear, Atomic Habits

Think about that for a second.

Even the habits that you know are bad for you, yet you continue doing serve a purpose in your life.

People that smoke know that it’s bad for them but for many it calms their nerves and they would much rather satisfy their instant urge to smoke, then save their lungs from eventually collapsing.

The thing is that if they associate smoking with feeling calm and confident, then the present value of smoking is worth more to them, then the future ramifications.

However, if they start associating smoking with bad smells and horrible feelings then they will eventually start disliking the habit.

Before we can effectively build new habits, we need to get a handle on our current ones.

James Clear, Atomic Habits

That’s a powerful quote and one that James helps you understand throughout the book

He teaches you a step by step process for creating habits that are aligned with your goals and shows you how to get rid of the habits that are hindering you from becoming the person you wish to be.

No matter what your goals are, Atomic Habits offers a proven framework for aligning your daily habits with them.

James Clear is an expert on habit formation and in this book, he reveals practical strategies that will teach you how to form good habits and break bad ones.


My Likes

I put this book on hold about a month ago and finally got the audiobook from my library last week.

I normally take a week or so to listen to a book but I listened to the entire book in two days.

The book is 5 hours and 35 minutes in length so you might think that two days is too much, but I normally only set aside one hour of my day for books.

However, this book was good that I couldn’t stop listening to it and just pushed a few things back so that I could immerse myself in it.

There are so many things to like about this book that I don’t even know where to start.

For starters, I love the way the book teaches you how to master tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results.

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.

James Clear, Atomic Habits

I’ll be honest with you — I didn’t believe that quote at first, but after doing a little research I found it to be true.

And that’s the reason why I love this book so much…

You have to make tiny changes that show minimal results at first, but over time the compounding effects of those tiny changes turn you into whoever you want to be.

I have seen the principles found within this book at work in my life and that of others. I didn’t understand all the science behind it, but James Clear helped clear that up with this book.

You should be far more concerned with your current trajectory then your current results.

James Clear, Atomic Habits

James Clear hammers down on this principle throughout his book and it’s something that I fully believe in.

Just like the bamboo analogy, you must make lots of small changes over time in order to see big results.

If you’re overweight and decide to lose some of those extra pounds you might see large results right away, but eventually, a point will come where it will be hard to notice the difference.

However, if you continue doing what works, you will eventually reach your ideal weight.

Other things to like about this book is the way he uses stories to stress the importance of certain principles.

I tend to connect more with books that use real-life stories to put their points across so if that’s you, then you’ll enjoy this book


My Dislikes

I don’t want to lie to you, but I actually had to go to Amazon and read the one-star reviews in order to remember the one thing that I jotted down as a dislike.

I usually take notes on a notebook, but for whatever reason I wrote this on my phone so I couldn’t find it until I saw those negative reviews.

This book has 88% 5-star and 1% 1-star ratings on Amazon so it’s certainly a well-liked book.

Most of the negative reviews on Amazon are from people that feel like most of the stuff on this book is common sense and could be condensed into fewer pages.

However, couldn’t this be said about every self-improvement book ever written?

Most of us know instinctively what’s good and bad for us, but we still struggle to get on the right path.

Sometimes we just need a little jolt from a new source to get us going.

Anyway, I just wanted to vent a little because I really don’t have much against this book.

The one dislike that I did write down was that he mentioned that many of our habits are hereditary.

He backs it up with some science, but I just can’t wrap my head around that concept.

I understand that there are many genetic diseases, but to jump from that to habits is a bit much in my eyes.

I think that environment plays a larger part in the habits you form.

My belief is that the things you’re taught while growing up and the environment you chose as an adult are the largest influence on the habits you create.

I don’t have scientific evidence to back this claim, but that’s my belief and I have seen it play out many times over in my own life.


Conclusion

Go get your copy of Atomic Habits.

No, really — this is a great book that I recommend to anyone who wishes to change any aspect of their life.

Whether it be a small or large change, this book will teach you how to form habits that better align with the best version of yourself.

As you could see I really struggled coming up with a dislike for this book, so it truly is a marvel.

You get what you repeat.

James Clear, Atomic Habits

You better believe it!

Click the image below if you haven’t already gotten your copy of Atomic Habits by James Clear.


What are your thoughts on this book?

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