Atomic Habits, by James Clear

As I write this, Atomic Habits has spent 85 weeks on the New York Times Best Seller list in the category ‘Advice, How-To and Miscellaneous’. This is extraordinary, and out of curiosity I decided to try it.

James Clear is not a scientist, though he’s a self-declared expert on habits, and my first impression of the book as I read about a childhood accident he had, his experience as a baseball player and businessman, was not a good one. But the book grew on me.

He writes well, he cites good sources (all footnoted), he sums up his main points at the end of every (very short) chapter, and the book makes sense.

The basic point – made by him and others who write about this field – seems to be to make small changes, be consistent, and over time you’ll get results.

If you’re struggling with the examples he frequently cites — you want to lose weight, read more books, do better in your profession, etc. — this book is not a bad place to start.