top of page
  • Writer's pictureGary Roth

1% Better Every Day: Small Steps to Big Personal Growth

Improving yourself doesn't have to be a daunting task. In fact, making small improvements each day can have a significant impact on your life in the long run. As author James Clear suggests, "Do one thing per day that compounds." This means that by consistently doing one small thing every day that contributes to your growth or development, you'll be surprised at how much progress you can make over time.

Here are some ideas for things you can do each day that will compound over time and contribute to your personal growth and self-improvement:

  1. Read for 15 minutes each day. This could be a book, an article, or even a blog post.

  2. Practice a new skill or hobby for 20 minutes each day. This could be learning a new language, practicing an instrument, or taking an online course.

  3. Meditate for 10 minutes each day. This can help reduce stress, increase focus, and improve overall well-being.

  4. Write in a journal for 5-10 minutes each day. This can help clarify your thoughts and emotions and provide a sense of self-reflection.

  5. Exercise for 20-30 minutes each day. This can help improve physical health, mental clarity, and overall energy levels.

  6. Practice gratitude by writing down three things you're thankful for each day. This can help shift your mindset to a more positive and grateful perspective.

  7. Connect with someone new each day, whether it's reaching out to an old friend or striking up a conversation with a stranger.

  8. Learn a new word each day and try to incorporate it into your vocabulary. This can help improve communication skills and expand your knowledge.

  9. Take a few minutes each day to declutter a small area in your home or workspace. This can help reduce stress and increase productivity.

  10. Set a specific goal each day and work towards achieving it. This could be as simple as making a phone call or sending an email, or it could be a larger goal related to your career, health, or personal life.

Remember, the key is to consistently do one thing each day that contributes to your personal growth and development. Over time, these small actions will compound and lead to significant progress and self-improvement.

It's not always easy to get started, but as Clear advises, "You'll feel better once you get started." It's often the act of starting that is the hardest part, but once you get going, you'll feel a sense of accomplishment and motivation to continue.

Here are some tips to help you get started on your self-improvement journey, especially if you've struggled with getting started in the past:

  1. Start small. It can be overwhelming to try to change everything at once, so focus on making small changes first. This will help build momentum and confidence over time.

  2. Identify your "why". What is your motivation for wanting to improve yourself? Understanding your reasons can help you stay motivated and focused on your goals.

  3. Create a plan. Identify specific actions you can take to work towards your goals, and create a plan for how you'll implement them.

  4. Set achievable goals. Make sure your goals are realistic and achievable, rather than setting yourself up for failure by trying to accomplish too much too quickly.

  5. Celebrate small wins. Celebrate your progress along the way, no matter how small. This will help build confidence and motivate you to keep going.

  6. Get support. Consider enlisting the help of a friend or family member, or joining a group or community focused on self-improvement. Having support can help keep you accountable and motivated.

  7. Be kind to yourself. Remember that self-improvement is a journey, and it's okay to have setbacks or make mistakes along the way. Be kind to yourself and focus on progress, not perfection.

  8. Keep a positive mindset. Try to focus on the positive aspects of your self-improvement journey and cultivate a growth mindset that embraces challenges and opportunities for learning.

Remember, self-improvement is a process that takes time and effort, but it's worth it. By starting small, setting achievable goals, and staying motivated and focused, you can make progress and create positive changes in your life.

One important aspect of personal growth is having a healthy relationship with yourself. As Clear notes, "The ability to love yourself improves your ability to be loved." It's important to cultivate a positive self-image and self-esteem, as this can impact how you approach relationships and the level of happiness you experience in them. As philosopher and professor Marshall McLuhan reminds us, "Resenting a new technology will not halt its progress." In the same vein, resisting personal growth and self-improvement will not lead to a fulfilling life.

Building healthy habits is another key aspect of personal growth. Writer Sarah Perry offers advice on building exercise habits that you actually enjoy. She suggests focusing on exercising for your own pleasure and at intensities that are comfortable for you. By focusing on the pleasure of the activity, you're more likely to stick with it and make it a habit.

Here are some more tips for building healthy habits that contribute to your personal growth:

  1. Start small. Just like with exercise, it's important to start small when building healthy habits. Set achievable goals and focus on making gradual changes over time.

  2. Find activities you enjoy. Whether it's exercise, cooking healthy meals, or practicing mindfulness, find activities that you genuinely enjoy and look forward to.

  3. Make it a priority. Set aside time each day or week to focus on your healthy habit. This will help make it a non-negotiable part of your routine.

  4. Be consistent. Consistency is key when it comes to building healthy habits. Try to practice your habit at the same time each day or week to make it a routine.

  5. Hold yourself accountable. Find ways to hold yourself accountable, whether it's by tracking your progress or enlisting the help of a friend or family member.

  6. Be patient with yourself. It takes time to build healthy habits, so be patient with yourself and celebrate your progress along the way.

  7. Practice self-compassion. Remember that building healthy habits is about self-improvement, not self-punishment. Be kind to yourself and focus on progress, not perfection.

  8. Stay motivated. Find ways to stay motivated, whether it's by rewarding yourself for reaching milestones or finding a supportive community to help keep you accountable.

Remember, building healthy habits is an ongoing process that takes time and effort. By focusing on activities you enjoy and making your habit a priority, you can build lasting habits that contribute to your personal growth and well-being.

So what can you do today to improve by 1%? It could be something as simple as reading for 15 minutes, going for a short walk, or practicing mindfulness for a few minutes. The key is to consistently make small improvements each day, as these will compound over time and lead to significant progress. As Clear reminds us, "Small habits don't add up. They compound."


bottom of page