Put In 1% More Effort

Siim Land

How would you like to get results a lot faster? To achieve your goals and dreams quicker than normally. It’s possible and everyone can do it. However, it won’t be easy nor quick. I’m about to share with you the magic of putting in 1% more effort.

The philosophy of 1% more effort is to put in only a small amount of more work in whatever we’re trying to accomplish. It’s the additional 10 minutes of reading, 2 paragraphs of writing, going the extra mile or making an additional rep. Whatever it might be, we can always do more.

These are the moments where our existence takes a leap and goes to the next level. It’s at that time we’re expanding our comfort zone and transcending our mode of being. We rise above the turmoil and cultivate our mastery.

The effectiveness of 1% more effort is quite profound. It might not seem like a lot, but over a long period of time the benefits of putting in only 1% more effort are immense. If added up, small steps will lead to big leaps and make a huge difference.

For instance, during walking, if we were to put in 1% more effort and make our steps only a tiny bit longer then over the course of 10 000 steps or 1 kilometer we’ve covered a lot of ground. We’ve managed to go ahead at least 10%. Not only that but we’ve done it faster.

Mastery and 1% more effort.


Another example. It’s said that mastery requires 10 000 hours of deliberate practice. That’s 417 days of 24/7 activity in total, which is a lot of time.

If we were to practice for 4 hours a day we would have 1460 hours for the entire year. To reach mastery it would take 6.8 years which is 6 years and 292 days.

If, however, we would put in 1% more effort and time into our practice, an additional 1% to the 4 hours of practice (4,04 hours or 243 minutes), then it would take us 6 years and 277 days to reach mastery.

Now, 15 days might seem like insignificant over the course of almost a decade. But look at this! The 1% of that 10 000 hours is 100 hours or 4.17 days. By putting in 1% more effort over that time we’ve managed to reduce the time it would’ve taken us by 3%. That’s 2% PURE PROFIT! Correct my maths if I’m wrong but that’s quite noteworthy. For the amount of 1% more effort we get double the amount of results.

put in 1% more effort

However, it’s never about the time we practice but more importantly the effectiveness of it. Moreover, we never put in ONLY 1% more effort. It’s not actually measurable and simply serves as an illustration and a concept of what I’m trying to convey here. This is only an example to show that if we were to simply take the extra time and effort we would get better results and get them a lot quicker.

Cost benefit of putting in 1% more effort.


Now let’s think about the cost benefit as well. To put in only 1% more effort requires so little actual effort and exertion in comparison to what we’ll get in the end. Like in the case of mastery, only adding 2,5 minutes of more practice to the 4 hours a day we’ve managed to achieve 10 000 hours 15 days earlier.

put in 1% more effort

The same applies to walking. Making our steps a few centimetres longer will add to the rate at which we’re moving forward. Not only in our stroll but in life in general. We’re getting ahead while not even exerting ourself and saving time. It’s barely noticeable and at that moment is insignificant. But in the grand scheme of things, over the course of the entire journey, it’s very significant.

Imagine going even beyond that. 2% is double the amount of 1% and so on ad infinitum. Practice for 5 minutes longer and you’ll reach mastery 30 days earlier etc. The results are much greater than taking that small extra step.

Apply 1% more effort.


This 1% more effort mentality can be applied to everything we do. Take the additional 10 minutes to read a book. Do the extra repetition. Make your walking steps only 1% longer. Go the additional way and help someone.

It only takes so little to accomplish so much. Our rate of growth is only determined by how much we’re habitually used to putting into. What we give is what we’ll get but in the case of applying the 1% more effort mentality we actually receive a lot more than we had at start. It’s pure profit which we can have by simply doing only slightly more.

There are several things that need to be taken into account. Here are a few tips on how to apply the 1% more effort philosophy.

  • Ask questions. If you were to ask yourself: „Is this all that I got?” What would the answer be?
    • If yes, then why is that? Are your limiting beliefs, habitual way of acting holding you down? Why are you being restricted by them? Have you planned on changing them so that you could become better? Or are you simply not good enough at the moment but are working on improving? Nevertheless, ask yourself what would I have to do to be able to improve next time? What needs to change and what are the biggest areas in need of development?
    • If no, then continue by going through the process of self-enquiry and find out: „How can I accomplish more right now, by putting in only 1% more effort?“ What needs to be done to do so? Can I do it (  I can. Read how to use affirmations.)? If yes, then do it. If no, why not and what do I need to do  to be able to do so?
  • Put in 1% more effort. Don’t fall into paralysis by analysis. Most of the time we already know what needs to be done but simply procrastinate on taking action. Once you know what needs to be done do it. If you lack motivation don’t worry. You don’t need it and shouldn’t rely on it. We only need discipline and take action to do the work we’re supposed to. (Read how to do things with no motivation.) By doing this you’re expanding your habitual level of resistance to fatigue and procrastination.
  • Focus on the quality. In the case of mastery all those 10 000 hours don’t mean anything unless the practice was deliberate. To actually get any benefits from our activities we need to be focusing on the quality not the quantity. Although time is an important variable that will contribute to this, it still needs to be filled with attentive and concentrated action to have a significant effect. The 1% more effort doesn’t count unless we actually try to improve and expand.
  • Habitually put in 1% more effort. It doesn’t matter that we’ve managed to spend more time growing only once. In order to get the double amount of results from our activities we need to be doing it on a consistent basis. Make it a part of everything you do. Try to think of ways on how to improve even on the most trivial of tasks. How can you put in 1% more effort into taking a shower (Read how to do cold thermogenesis), cleaning your room or cooking dinner etc.? We shouldn’t be focusing on these minor tasks all the time but instead use them as exercise for our mind to figure out ways to improve and out body to go through the motions.
  • Don’t only increase but also decrease. Putting in 1% more effort can be used in both the activities that serve and impede us. Too much social media, watching TV or doing groceries for too long are something that a lot of people struggle with. Luckily this principle can be applied to those aswell by simply turning it around. How can I put less time and effort into the things that harm me? What activities do I need to cut away in order to do more of the things I love and are beneficial at the same time?
  • Post-exertion recuperation. After you’ve put in 1% more effort you’ve pushed the boundaries of your comfort zone slightly further. Now your standard is that many hours, miles, reps, pages etc. Was it that bad? Not really, you barely noticed a change but the benefits will be evident after a while. This is the time to recollect your resources and analyze your performance. How much more did you accomplish? Can you do it again? Will you do it again? Can you take it further and add another 1%? Don’t go overboard with this and immediately go to 1000%. Build up from where you’re currently at.

Once we go through the process we realise that up until this point we’ve been only holding ourselves back and we’re much greater than we thought. The wall around our abilities is illusory and self-created. By putting in 1% more effort we’ve managed to shift its boundaries further and changed our mode of being. Step by step we begin to grow. This mentality was something I used to write my own book. It’s called Becoming a Self-Empowered Being: Achieving Body-Mind-Mastery and Living One’s Calling. What allowed me to create it was following this philosophy. Not only did I put in a meager 1% more effort but a lot more. The book is about taking control of our own reality. In addition to that topics covered include nutrition, exercise, meditation, discipline, calling, mastery and purposeful living. I’ve done by part. Can you manage putting in 1% more effort and clicking this link to check it out? It would be the first step towards changing your life.


  • Great article

  • Great advice…1% more..Yesssss

  • Wow this is a really interesting way of looking at things! Thanks also for liking my post. I just started 2 hours ago. It seems like we are using the same theme but why is it that your posts have a “continue reading ->” ? I’d like that too. Is it the post format? I tried changing my post formats but nothing changed…

    • Thanks! It’s the “insert read more tag” in the editing window.