Achieving Results: The Power of the 1% Method

Several people have asked me how I get so much done when I have so many other commitments. Theres no real secret, I just don’t try to get everything done at once. Pacing yourself is crucial, as is avoiding taking advice from people who don’t walk their talk!

We often hear about the importance of setting big goals and making massive changes to achieve success. While these aspirations can be inspiring, they can also be overwhelming and so often lead to complete, abject failure.

The idea of completely transforming our lives or achieving something big overnight is a daunting prospect for many. Fortunately, thats not how to get it done. There’s a more manageable approach known as the 1% method, which emphasizes the power of gradual, continuous improvement and effort.

Understanding the 1% Method

The 1% method is a simple yet highly effective strategy for achieving remarkable results over time. It’s based on the principle of making small, consistent improvements, and taking small sensible steps towards task completion, in various aspects of your life or work.

The idea is to focus on getting just 1% better each day or each week in a specific area or in completing a task or project, whether it’s your skills, habits, knowledge, writing, creating or advancing a project. While a 1% improvement may seem insignificant on a daily basis, over the long term, it can lead to substantial growth and success. Patience is its own reward – we’ve all heard the saying. Truth is, only patience with purpose leads to rewards!

The Science Behind the 1% Method

The 1% method is grounded in the concept of compound interest. Just as your financial investments can grow exponentially over time through compound interest, your personal and professional development and productivity can also experience exponential growth when you consistently apply the 1% method. Each small improvement builds upon the last, creating a cumulative effect that can lead to significant achievements.

Applying the 1% Method

Identify Your Focus Area: Start by identifying the specific area or in your life or work where you want to apply the 1% method. It could be improving your writing skills and output, enhancing your physical fitness, or becoming more organized.

Set Clear Goals: Define clear and achievable goals related to your chosen area. Make sure these goals are measurable so that you can track your progress effectively.

Break It Down: Divide your goals into smaller, manageable tasks. This step is crucial because it allows you to identify the daily or weekly actions that will contribute to your 1% improvement.

Consistency Is Key: Commit to taking those small actions consistently. Whether it’s practicing a new skill for 20 minutes each day or dedicating time to study or write regularly, consistency is vital.

Track Your Progress: Keep a record of your progress. This can be as simple as a you note of your daily or weekly achievements. Tracking your progress helps you stay motivated and see how far you’ve come.

Confidence in the 1% Method

The 1% method is not just a theoretical concept; it’s supported by research on habit formation and continuous improvement. Studies have shown that consistent, small efforts can lead to significant improvements in various areas of life. Moreover, many successful individuals and organizations have attributed their achievements to the power of gradual progress.

Overnight success stories hide the decade of work that went beforehand. The 1% method reminds us that sustainable, long-term success is built on the foundation of consistent, incremental improvements. By applying this method to your personal and professional life, you can achieve remarkable results over time. So, start today by identifying your focus area and taking that first 1% step toward a brighter future.


Duhigg, Charles. (2012). The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business:

Clear, James. (2018). Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones:

The 1% Rule by Tommy Baker:

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About the Author: Michael O'Sullivan