James Clear Newsletter


3-2-1 Newsletter by James Clear“The most wisdom per word of any newsletter on the web.”

3-2-1: On dealing with conflict, writing books, and working on the right level

read onJAMESCLEAR.COM | MAY 27, 2021

Happy 3-2-1 Thursday,

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

3 Ideas From Me

I.

“Convincing someone to change their mind is really the process of convincing someone to change their tribe. If they abandon their beliefs, they run the risk of losing social ties. You can’t expect someone to change their mind if you take away their community too. You have to give them somewhere to go.

Nobody wants their worldview torn apart if loneliness is the outcome.”


​II.

“If you think you can learn a lot from reading books, try writing one.”

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III.

“The list of mistakes you can never recover from is very short.

But you likely realize your life will not be destroyed if your book doesn’t sell or if a potential date turns you down or if your startup goes bust. It’s not the failed outcome that paralyzes us. It’s the possibility of looking stupid, feeling humiliated, or dealing with embarrassment that prevents us from getting started at all.

The first step to being courageous is being willing to look foolish.”

2 Quotes From Others

I.

French moralist Joseph Joubert on dealing with conflict:

“Never cut what you can untie.”

Source: Some of the “Thoughts” of Joseph Joubert


​II.

Author Marilynne Robinson on why she writes:

INTERVIEWER: What led you to start writing essays?

ROBINSON: “To change my own mind. I try to create a new vocabulary or terrain for myself, so that I open out — I always think of the Dutch claiming land from the sea — or open up something that would have been closed to me before. That’s the point and the pleasure of it. I continuously scrutinize my own thinking. I write something and think, How do I know that that’s true? If I wrote what I thought I knew from the outset, then I wouldn’t be learning anything new.”

Source: The Paris Review Interviews: Volume IV

1 Question For You

Am I working at the right level? Do I need to zoom in or zoom out?

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Until next week,

James Clear
Author of the multi-million-copy bestseller, Atomic Habits
Creator of the 
Habit Journal