At CPA On Fire, our team is currently reading Atomic Habits by James Clear. This book outlines how tiny changes in your habits (both good and bad) can lead to immense results. We have seen in our personal lives and within the company, the huge difference that these principals can make.

I think it is safe to say that most people are trying to become better at what they do, especially entrepreneurs. But sometimes forming better habits just doesn’t seem to stick. For entrepreneurs, it could mean the difference between an unsuccessful business and a billion-dollar industry. The tough part is making sure that habit/routine/practice actually becomes a lifestyle change.

Atomic Habits lays a good foundation of how to begin forming AND committing to good habits. Habits can make a huge difference in your life; they can be beneficial, or they can be detrimental. That is why it is important to ask yourself why you do what you do. In understanding the reason behind your habits, you can determine if they are positive or negative. Try thinking of some habits you have; why do you do them? Do you grab for a snack as soon as a project gets stressful? Do you pick your phone up as soon as it buzzes with a notification? Then ask yourself whether or not that habit is a positive influence in your life. You will probably realize that not all of your habits are the best.

When forming new habits, or converting bad habits into good habits, make sure to always be asking yourself: “Would a _________ business owner be doing this?” and fill in the blank with whatever word describes the person you want to be. Would a successful business owner be doing this? Would an efficient business owner be doing this? If the answer lines up with the type of person you want to be, then keep doing it. But if it goes against the kind of person you want to be, then think twice before continuing a potentially negative habit.

You always have the chance to become a better entrepreneur. Wake up 10 minutes earlier each day or spend an extra 15 minutes coming up with new ideas. Make the little changes that will ultimately lead you to your new standard. As an entrepreneur, you want your habits to reflect the business model you want to have. If you want your business to be efficient and productive, then you have to be efficient and productive. Start today with making just 1 small change toward improving yourself as a business owner. Do that every day and it will not be long before you are noticing the meaningful results.

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