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The daily practice and the overnight success

Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

A penny that doubles everyday is worth just about 80 bucks at the end of two weeks. But, it is worth ten million at the end of a month.

But this is the path to overnight success. It has years and years of little improvements that amount to seemingly nothing. And one fine day, there is such a big jump on that improvement curve that it appears to be an overnight success.

The daily practice is simply this process of little improvement. A one percent improvement over the previous day, every day.

This is one simple commitment that if adhered to, will help you make all other decisions, from tiny to big.

If you find yourself saying yes to every opportunity that comes along, and are afraid of missing out on opportunities, commit to improving one percent each day in anything that you do. There is only twenty four hours in a day. And even though one percent seems like a tiny improvement, it takes time and energy to do that. And you can't spend more than twenty four hours. So, at one point, you will find yourself saying no. Either to something new that you can't dedicate the time to improve by one percent each day, or to something that you're currently doing so that the new thing can take its place.

This is how I uninstalled Duolingo. I used to learn something new each day in Spanish or Dutch or Italian, until I reached a point when I could no longer spend enough time in a day to improve by one percent.

Which brings me to the next big advantage. When you are improving by one percent each day, it gets progressively harder to keep it going until we plateau out. And when you are no longer able to improve by one percent, you have to level up. And leveling up involves approaching the problem with newer skills. This is when you up the game.

For me, this meant moving on from Duolingo to actual classes with a tutor. And I decided I didn't have the time for it now. At the gym, I constantly improved by one percent a day for about two months, and then I struggled to keep doing it. This is when I had to take a new approach and change my diet. Now I'm continuing to make progress. When I hit the plateau again, I'll have to find what it takes to level up again.

This is why I write everyday.

I wrote everyday for a long time. Until I hit a plateau. Then I decided to level up by writing not just a blog post each day, but also thousand words of fiction each day. A year later, I had my first novel out. And now I think my second will be better than my first.

The quickest path to being an overnight success is to follow the daily practice. And it could still be several years before you get there.

But without it, there is no hope whatsoever.

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