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 unfinished projects, living a curious life, and the stories we tell ourselves

read onJAMESCLEAR.COM | JULY 15, 2021

Happy 3-2-1 Thursday,

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

3 Ideas From Me

I.

“Strangely, life gets harder when you try to make it easy.

Exercising might be hard, but never moving makes life harder. Uncomfortable conversations are hard, but avoiding every conflict is harder. Mastering your craft is hard, but having no skills is harder.

Easy has a cost.”


​II.

“Unfinished projects can’t compound.”

(Share this on Twitter)​


III.

“When choosing a new habit many people seem to ask themselves, “What can I do on my best days?”

The trick is to ask, “What can I stick to even on my worst days?”

Start small. Master the art of showing up. Scale up when you have the time, energy, and interest.”

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2 Quotes From Others

I.

Poet Mary Oliver on living a curious, engaged life:

“When it’s over, I want to say: all my life I was a bride married to amazement. I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder if I have made of my life something particular, and real. I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened, or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.”

Source: When Death Comes


​II.

A parable from priest and therapist Anthony de Mello on the stories we tell ourselves:

“A man found an eagle’s egg and put it in a nest of a barnyard hen. The eaglet hatched with the brood of chickens and grew up with them.

All his life the eagle did what the barnyard chicks did, thinking he was a barnyard chicken. He scratched the earth for worms and insects. He clucked and cackled. And he would thrash his wings and fly a few feet into the air.

Years passed and the eagle grew very old. One day he saw a magnificent bird above him in the cloudless sky. It glided in graceful majesty among the powerful wind currents, with scarcely a beat of its strong golden wings.

The old eagle looked up in awe. “Who’s that?” he asked.

“That’s the eagle, the king of the birds,” said his neighbor. “He belongs to the sky. We belong to the earth—we’re chickens.”

So the eagle lived and died a chicken, for that’s what he thought he was.”

Source: Song of the Bird

1 Question For You

What happens if I slow down? What happens if I speed up?

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