James Clear

James Clear quotes on truth

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

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Step 1: Know exactly what you want. Have a big vision that is crystal clear. Step 2: Know exactly what is true. See reality for what it is and accept the honest facts of the situation. Step 3: Be flexible in the way you close the gap between 1 and 2. Bold. Rational. Adaptable.


When reading books or listening to podcasts or taking advice, remember that everyone is biased to their personal history. The world is complex and there is no single path to a success. Look for patterns that are repeated across many successful people, not single stories.


The ideal level of confidence is slightly beyond your actual ability. Never be so detached from reality that you become delusional, but never dip low enough that you become your own bottleneck. Most people are capable of more than they believe.


An expense gives you back less than what you put into it. A transaction gives you back roughly the same as what you put into it. An investment gives you back more than what you put into it. Many things look like investments, but are actually expenses.


Observe the world as it is—do not demand it to be a certain way—and you will have a chance of seeing the truth.


Stories change more minds than facts. The way to change someone’s mind is not to present them with overwhelming evidence but to motivate them with overwhelming emotion. (Ideally, you’d have truth on your side and a story worth spreading.)


Merely believing you deserve something doesn’t make it a reality. But believing you *don’t* deserve something will prevent you from trying. Most people are capable of more than they believe. Confidence won’t automatically get you results, but self-doubt sets your ceiling.


History repeats itself because some experiences need to be lived before they can be understood.


If you're broke, you want the get-rich-quick scheme to be true. If you run a startup, you want the questionable growth metrics to be true. It's easy to fool yourself when you want to be fooled.


One pitfall of modern life is that we often measure ourselves by that which is easy to measure. -the number on the scale -the ROI of the portfolio -the number of likes on a post It is unlikely that what can be measured is the best way to measure a life. You are not a number.


Never ignore an important truth merely because of the amount of work it would take to accept it.


I’m increasingly convinced the important question to ask is not, “What is true?” But rather, “When is this true?”


A simple explanation for a large amount of human behavior: Most days, we'd rather be wrong with the crowd than be right by ourselves. The reward of belonging to the tribe and being accepted is often greater than the reward of winning an argument, looking smart, or finding truth.


People often hold a particular belief or state an opinion because of what it signals to others in that moment not because it will be accurate in the long run. Belonging, acceptance, and praise from the people we care about frequently overpowers the quest for truth and accuracy.


Believing a lie makes you an outcast if others think it is a lie. Believing a lie helps you belong if others believe it is true. Many ideas persist not because they are true, but because they are unifying.


Anyone can dream big. Daily habits—tiny routines that are repeatable—are what make big dreams a reality.


There are n+1 versions of reality. n = the number of living beings in the universe. Each one perceives the world differently and creates its own reality. Then, there is the actual physical reality of the universe. No one has full access to it, but, presumably, it still exists.


All perspectives hold some truth. None of them contain the complete truth.

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