ZOOMER Magazine


- —Bert Archer

There is a simple nugget of good advice in James Clear’s massively bestsellin­g guide to happiness and success, Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones. If you have habits that make you unhappy, or lack habits that might make you happier, don’t leap from one scheme and break through to another; change one small thing every day, and be patient. It takes years to break habits like smoking or overeating. So it should be no surprise, he says, that it takes just as long to make new ones. Clear was a teen athlete when his face got smashed by a rogue baseball bat. He almost died. Trying to recover and excel in spite of his accident, he was forced by physical and mental obstacles to take it step by small, careful step. Six years later, he was one of the top athletes in the U.S., and got his college’s medal for academic achievemen­t. To pass his hard-won wisdom along, he brings in lessons from pioneering psychologi­sts Edward Thorndike and B.F. Skinner, neurologis­t Viktor Frankl and even German philosophe­r Friedrich Nietzsche to formulate his own four laws: Make it obvious; make it attractive; make it easy; and make it satisfying. No gimmick, just example after solid example making a convincing case that this might actually work.

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