We at Launch Leadership Development have found another great book to add to your professional library – The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson. This commentary is based on his 8th Anniversary addition, which has additional chapters and has been updated.

The Slight Edge teaches that it’s the little daily habits performed consistently every day that give you the slight edge over 95% of all other people in any endeavor.  If this sounds familiar, yes, The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy was published 5 years after this book, with a different take on the same idea. I have studied both, and they each offer unique suggestions, making it worth your while to read both.

Today I’d like to share some of the things that stood out to me as I read this book:

  • Your philosophy is the starting point
  • Two life paths
  • Cultivate Slight Edge habits

Your philosophy is the starting point.

  • Information and “how to” are important, but if information was all it took to succeed, everyone would be successful with their goals. Consider dieting, for instance!  No, the secret ingredient, my friend, is your philosophy- how you do the “how to’s”.  It’s the catalyst that makes the “how to’s” work for you.
  • Your philosophy is the way you think about things- your view of life.  Do you have a positive, hopeful philosophy? Your philosophy creates your attitudes, which influence your actions, which create your results.
  •  I decided that my philosophy is “With God all things are possible”. This will hold me up when I feel like quitting or doubt I can reach my goals.

Two life paths:

  • Where you end up in life is determined by the little choices you make daily
  • Your actions do not move in a straight line – whether you do or don’t do something does not put you on the same plane of time. You are either moving up toward your goals or falling down away from them.
  • Time will promote you or expose you. Your choices will be visible to all.
  • Where are you on your path? Are you improving or getting worse? There is no in-between!
  • Small successes in one area can spread to the other areas. Do one small thing to start the momentum! The choice is NOW- you CAN change your future by changing one small habit daily.

Cultivate Slight Edge Habits NOW

Habits started out as a choice and were repeated until they became automatic. Choices come from your philosophy. To get rid of bad habits you must replace them, day by day, until the new ones are automatic.

These are the 7 habits recommended to start implementing now:

  1. Show up – half the people don’t do this!
  2. Be consistent – consistency magnifies the power
  3. Have a positive outlook – the benefits are numerous!
  4. Be committed for the long haul – it takes more than 90 days to see success- don’t give up!
  5. Cultivate a burning desire backed by faith – desires can be fickle. A burning desire is one where you can SEE yourself succeeding and you KNOW inside you will succeed. That is what it takes!
  6. Be willing to pay the price – what will it cost you? Time, money, sacrificing other things? Remember, there is a bigger price for not accomplishing your dream!
  7. Practice Slight Edge integrity– this means keep consistent even when no one is watching. Do not skip a good daily habit even once.

Three steps to your dreams

  1. Write it down – truly envision the details! Be specific with what and when. It needs to feel real to you. It must be created first in your mind before reality.
  2. Look at it everyday –This reminds and programs your brain. Use autosuggestions- twice a day say aloud and revisit these goals so your subconscious will recognize things that support these goals and act on them.
  3. Start with a plan – this is not a detailed blueprint of how to create your dream. It is a starting point that will be adjusted many times. It’s a simple baby step to start the momentum. That’s all. It could be “ask everyone I know if they can recommend a good ________” Start here and don’t feel pressured to figure everything out.

This is just a snapshot of three chapters that made an impact on me. There are many others I found enlightening, such as Ch. 7 The Secret of Happiness, and Ch. 8 The Ripple Effect. I also enjoyed completing his workbook pages walking me through plans for seven areas of my life.

I recommend this book highly, and for more study on The Slight Edge, check out this video!

-Jan Jones