The 10 Best Articles of 2013

What a year. After writing every Monday and Thursday since November 12, 2012 (more than 100 articles and over 120,000 words), I’m taking today to share the best articles I've written over the past year…

The 10 Best Articles of 2013

Going back through my work was an interesting exercise. There were a lot of articles that I thought were decent, but didn't make the cut. (For example: this, this, and this.)

For one reason or another, the posts below are the ones that generated the most views, shares, comments, and emails.

1. Successful People Start Before They Feel Ready

This post, which shares my lessons learned from meeting Richard Branson, was my first article on JamesClear.com. It randomly became popular about 6 months later and now it has been read more than anything else I have written.

2. Identity-Based Habits: How to Actually Stick to Your Goals This Year

Most of my posts share stories and lessons that I have learned from other people. This one might be the only original and unique idea that I actually came up with myself. In any case, the concept of building the identity of the type of person who can achieve your goals seemed to resonate with many people. (And it might be useful if you're starting to think about goals and resolutions for the new year.)

3. Forget About Setting Goals. Focus on This Instead.

This article talks about why goals aren't necessary for progress. Some of the comments say that it was a “perspective-shifting article” and “one of the most useful and thought provoking” pieces I have written. In any case, I'm glad people have found it useful and it is definitely a topic that I will be writing more about in the future.

4. How to Stop Procrastinating by Using the “2–Minute Rule”

This article covers a simple strategy to help you stop procrastinating on the small things. And — when slightly adjusted — it can be used to stick with a new habit as well.

5. The Beginner’s Guide to Intermittent Fasting

Beware. This is a 3,600-word beast of an article. Personally, I think I did a better job explaining how intermittent fasting fits into my lifestyle when I wrote about “What I’ve Learned from 2 Years of Intermittent Fasting.” But the beginner’s guide is a tutorial on how it works, who should do it, and what your options are for implementing it into your lifestyle. (Note: People who decide to give intermittent fasting a try often have tons of questions. I tried to answer them in additional articles here and here.)

6. Haters and Critics: How to Deal with People Judging You and Your Work

In this article, I shared some of the criticism my work has received and how I have responded. After I posted this, I couldn’t believe the hundreds of supportive comments and emails I received from the members of our community. (Thank you!)

7. How to Stay Focused When You Get Bored Working Toward Your Goals

“Fall in love with boredom” has become one of my new mantras, and this is the article where that phrase first stumbled out of my brain and onto the page.

8. How to Stop Procrastinating by Using the “Seinfeld Strategy”

A short story about Jerry Seinfeld’s nifty strategy for beating procrastination, developing consistency, and doing the important work each day.

9. Lessons on Success and Deliberate Practice from Mozart, Picasso, and Kobe Bryant

Success doesn't come easily or quickly. This article talks about the “10 years of silence” that is required to go from good to great. I also covered the difference between practice and deliberate practice. In particular, athletes, musicians, and performers seem to really enjoy this article.

10. The Difference Between Professionals and Amateurs

This post shares a conversation I had with a successful author and how the lessons I learned shaped my writing and weightlifting strategy.

My Best Articles of All-Time

Looking for more good articles to read? Check out other top posts and the complete archive of the best articles I've written.

As always, thanks for reading!