WTF is a personal flywheel?

What are your long-term ambitions? Maybe they include finding time for hobbies, becoming an authority in your field or eating healthier. But achieving something like that requires a lot of effort over time. That’s where a personal flywheel comes in.
Personal flywheel 16x9 hero

A concept coined by business author Jim Collins, flywheels are often used to simply explain how businesses like Amazon have become so big and successful. The idea is that for any big change to happen, it requires a series of logical steps that flow naturally into each other into a reinforcing loop – one that’s repeated over and over again. 

• Identifying what goes at the top of your flywheel is crucial – eg, for eating healthier, it might be a desire for a better diet.

• Each part of the flywheel after that should follow naturally, with no more than six components that outline a path back to the top of the loop. 

• Each part should be inevitable and a natural progression from the part before it.

• Each part will be unique to you – something you’ll need to work out and tweak over time.

• Each part needs to be working well – it can’t get stuck at any point.  

• Your flywheel needs to be used – and improved upon – over a long period of time. We're talking years. The longer you give it, the more effective it should become.

A version of this article was published in the Courier Weekly newsletter. For more useful stories, tips, tricks and simply good advice, sign up here.

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