James Clear

James Clear quotes on relationships

Author of the #1 NYT bestseller Atomic Habits. I write about building better habits.

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1

Aim to be great in 10 years. Build health habits today that lead to a great body in 10 years. Build social habits today that lead to great relationships in 10 years. Build learning habits today that lead to great knowledge in 10 years. Long-term thinking is a secret weapon.

2

Solve big problems early. Rebound after one missed workout, not a decade of inactivity. Repair a strained relationship the next day, not years later. Fix overspending before it becomes a lifestyle. Problems with simple solutions at first become difficult to unwind over time.

3

Successful outcomes are built up through good choices over time. A profitable business is never a choice, it is a series of choices. A fit body is never a choice, it is a series of choices. A strong relationship is never a choice, it is a series of choices.

4

In business, you'll learn more by making friends with peers who are two steps ahead of you than you will from mentors. In life, you'll learn more by making friends with someone who is two decades older than you than you will from peers.

5

If you want to be rich, then be kind. It’s hard to create wealth unless you work well with others, and it’s hard to work well with others if you are unlikable. Even if you can do it without kindness, rich jerks end up poor in friendship. You can buy friends, but not good ones.

6

Friendship happens on the way to something else. If you “try to meet new people” it feels weird and forced. The more you aim for friendship, the more it eludes you. But if you aim to learn or achieve something with others, friendship happens naturally during the shared pursuit.

7

A hidden danger in modern relationships: You can only date/marry a complete human with flaws. But you can follow people on social media in the top 1% of looks/smarts/wealth/etc without seeing their flaws and compare your relationship to them. Don’t judge the whole by one part.

8

All friendships and relationships develop inside jokes. The longer the relationship, the more inside jokes you develop. The more inside jokes you develop, the weirder they get. Thus, at some point, all the best friendships and relationships get really weird.

9

Bad habits and toxic relationships can become a crutch. They hurt us, but we know *how* they’ll hurt us. Meanwhile, improving your life is possible, but trying new things also involves uncertainty. Many people would rather repeat a known pain than deal with an unknown risk.

10

Marriage is about finding the person you want to be bored with. Much of the beauty of relationships is hidden in ordinary, boring moments.

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