James Clear Newsletter

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3-2-1: The responsibility of any creator, leadership, and how to succeed

read on JAMESCLEAR.COM | JANUARY 12, 2023

Happy 3-2-1 Thursday!

Here are 3 ideas, 2 quotes, and 1 question to consider this week.

3 Ideas From Me


“The hard way is the fast way.

Do it right the first time and you won’t have to do it over the next time.”

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“The responsibility of any creator is to do the work, not judge it.

Your job is to fall in love with the process, not grade the outcome.”

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“Leadership begins with your behavior.

What’s more powerful? A manager or coach or teacher who tells you the right thing to do? Or one who shows you how to live and work by example?

People gravitate toward the standard you set, not the standard you request.”

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2 Quotes From Others


Clinical psychologist, Helen Schucman, on love:

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”

Source: A Course in Miracles


Charles Hayward, a cabinet maker and editor of The Woodworker magazine, offers some advice on how to succeed in woodworking (and in life):

“One thing is certain: that, even though the craft is a lifetime’s study, the application of a few simple principles will assuredly bring success in woodworking. In the first place, never start a job until you know precisely how you are going to do it. Pass its construction step by step through your mind, so that you may hit upon the snags and mentally smooth them out.

Don’t work hurriedly. Your very keenness may prompt you to rush, but to do so is fatal. Curb your desire to see the thing finished, and always concentrate intently upon the particular bit of the job you have in hand.

In all you do be accurate. No measurement, no cut, no squaring, should be “near enough.” It must be right. For often one inaccuracy becomes the seed of others, and reproduces trouble as the work proceeds.

Finally, don’t worry about an honest mistake. Ponder the reason for it and so learn from it. Progress at your own speed from simple job to something more difficult, but never force the pace. At the same time, be just as ambitious as your previous work warrants.”

Source: The Woodworker 

Note: This quote lightly edited for clarity.

1 Question For You

Eliminate. Focus. Close yourself to the world and ask, “What can I create today?”

Relax. Breathe. Open yourself to the world and ask, “What can I receive today?”

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Until next week,

James ClearAuthor of Atomic Habits and keynote speaker​

p.s. This is just plain cool.


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