I have a goal every morning to be up at the crack of dawn around 6 am. Typically what I do is I will read and study. I've been reading Atomic Habits by James Clear and Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. I study scriptures like the New Testament or articles from Harvard Business Review.
I'm waking up and reading for a few reasons.
1) When I read in the morning it frees up more time to do other things later in the day.
2) Mornings are typically pretty quiet and I find it the best hours of the day to think and create.
3) And finally, one of my goals is to learn and improve a little every day and this helps me to do that.
Recently I've been struggling to get up at 6 am in the morning. I'll sometimes get up at 6:30 or 7 sometimes even a little later and frankly, I'm pretty upset about it. I keep thinking to myself why can't I be consistent with this why can it be so hard?
Here's the reason and it's about the Philosophy of Improvement. You can't improve on something if it's perfect. Every single one of us is a flawed human being. Attaining perfection is just not possible. In many areas of life, we are going to fail and be inconsistent. Hence the need for regular improvement.
Eventually, mastery may come in some areas of life but there are always going to be other areas that require us to learn more and improve on them.
Now eventually I will get better at the habit of waking up at 6 am and I may be able to put a long streak together but I have a feeling there may be a day or two I might miss. My point is we all miss sometimes, and not to beat ourselves up about it.
Improvement comes when you have something to improve on. So even if you miss a workout, are not eating healthy, putting away money for retirement or something else, Don't Put Up a Zero, and if you do come back the next day and get back on track and find ways to improve.
I think this quote from Olympic Athlete Kim Collins sums it up well:
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