The 1% Journal


Here’s my new journal. Like you (probably), I already have 3,000 of the bastards, but now I have another one.


In the spirit of honesty, I’ve had this one for years (it’s actually a 2015-16 diary – with space for notes – that I was given for being a magician at Everton FC and for not killing anyone).

’What are you going to use it for?’ I hear none of you ask. Good question.

This is now my “1% journal”.

I’ve long wanted to test the idea that one of the keys to a good life (whatever the hell that may be) is to continually make small improvements.

To get a little bit better every day.

“Success is the progressive realisation of a worthy ideal” claims Earl Nightingale, (or it might have been Mollie Sugden – I can’t remember).

“Progressive”…”realisation” – these ideas speak about gradual changes, rather than big/hairy/audacious/[insert your own synonym for “massive” here] ones.

It’s the little things that add up over time.

The trouble is, the little things are the hardest to spot. Like old age, winter and that weirdo that lives at number 63, they creep up on us…slowly…and before you know it – BAM! They strike, leaving you old, cold or gaffa taped to a radiator in the basement at number 63.

Because tiny changes aren’t noticeable, we don’t actually notice them. That sounds rather silly and obvious, but is it?

We often make small, but significant, changes in our lives but, because we don’t immediately see the impact they have (or the potential they will have), we convince ourselves that we’re not making progress; that it’s not enough, so we stop and look for bigger, supposedly better, actions and we lose any momentum we may have built up.

Small changes count.

And if I’m going to make small changes, I need to keep track of them.

So this is what the diary is for – to keep track of the 1% – the one new thing I do every day to hopefully make my life a little bit better.

Hopefully, keeping track of this in a lovely Moleskin-esque notebook will give the practice some gravitas and make me feel all wise, learned and shit, innit.

If you’re interested in the idea of small habits, you could do worse than grab a copy of James Clear’s book, Atomic Habits. – it’s a fabulous book (summary of it coming soon!).

James Altucher talks a lot about this kind of thing too.

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