Marginal Improvements

By: Joel Cochran

If you have ever read any of my blogs before you may have noticed a recurring theme of self reflection and improvement.  I enjoy writing about it because it is something that I am constantly striving towards in my life. Whether it is learning a new skill, reading self improvement books, listening to podcasts, volunteering for an organization or just trying to become more efficient in my double unders; I am always looking for an opportunity to grow.

If you are reading this and you participate in Welded then you probably have the same hunger and thirst to improve because as Weldedters we are constantly striving to get to the next tier, hit a new PR, complete an Rx workout or have the top time of the day.  This is what makes Welded one of the best evidence based fitness programs available because we are in a constant state of self improvement.

The thing with self improvement is that it’s not easy and it takes time.  This holds true in Welded and in life, whether you are trying to get a muscle up or be a better parent to your children.   We are constantly making choices throughout our day to take a step forward, stay where we are at or take a step backwards. What those all have in common is TIME.

As you all may know there are 24 hours in a day and 168 hours in a week.  For the most part a single hour will not define our week or who we are, but as weeks become months and months become years that hour that seemed so meaningless now carries a lot more weight.  

This concept is called The Aggregation of Marginal Gains which I touched on in a past blog 3 Step Process on Getting What you Want. The idea is that if you make small improvements (1% or less) that over time those gains would eventually add up to remarkable improvements.

The main factor here is TIME and CONSISTENCY.  If these are not in sync then the self improvement can quickly turn to a decline which will get worse over time if not changed as shown in the graph above.   

By applying the aggregation of marginal gains to the 1 hour a week we discussed earlier we can see that over a given amount of time the small improvements become larger and larger.  Now I know what you are probably thinking right now; “I already don’t have enough time in my day, where am I suppose to find another hour?!” I am glad you hypothetically asked!

I am going to help you find an hour of your time in 1 minute or less.  Here we go!

Open your iPhone and go to your settings.  

Scroll down to Battery and click on it.

What you will find is the battery percentage usage of the certain apps that you use in a 24 hour and 7 day period.  If you click on the little clock just to the right it will show you the exact hours that app was opened up for.

What you will find by doing this quick “life audit” is that you spend more than just 1 hour on things such as Instagram, youtube, text messaging, games etc.  Some of you may be surprised by the amount of time you spend on these things and others may not, but regardless what we all can see is how we can make room for 1 hour.  

So the next time that you say “I don’t have enough time” try to remember that just 1 hour a week can eventually get you from thinking about that “1 goal” to accomplishing it.  So what are you wasting your time for? Get to it!