James Clear Newsletter

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3-2-1: One of the most critical skills in life, and the value of knowing yourself

read on JamesClear.com | April 6, 2023

Happy 3-2-1 Thursday!

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

3 Ideas From Me


“Create your life rather than live it.”

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“One of the most critical skills in life—and yet never taught in school—is choosing where to direct your attention.

After graduation, the valedictorian will often get lapped by “average” people who better invest their time.”

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“Money plays an important role in life, but it can’t be the only filter for how you decide to spend your time. Nobody will ever pay you to go on a date with your spouse or take your kids to the park or grab coffee with your parents.”

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2 Quotes From Others


Carl Jung, the influential psychiatrist, on the value of knowing yourself:

“The world will ask you who you are, and if you don’t know, the world will tell you.”

Source: Paraphrased from Memories, Dreams, Reflections


Philosopher and writer Sir Roger Scruton on the importance of building beautiful things:

“There is a deep human need for beauty, and if you ignore that need in architecture, your buildings will not last, since people will never feel at home in them.”

Source: The Modern Cult of Ugliness

1 Question For You

Today’s question is a two-parter:

When I’m living a good day, what am I spending my time on?

Do the sources of information I am exposed to each day support that type of lifestyle or distract from it?

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Until next week,

James ClearAuthor of Atomic Habits and keynote speaker​


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