The Compound Effect - Darren Hardy

The Compound Effect - Darren Hardy

 Video Book Summary

Download all of the Mind Maps here.

Book Summary Notes

The Compound Effect

“This book is about success and what it really takes to earn it. It’s time someone told it to you straight. You’ve been bamboozled for too long. There is no magic bullet, secret formula, or quick fix. You don’t make $200,000 a year spending two hours a day on the Internet, lose 30 pounds in a week, rub 20 years off your face with a cream, fix your love life with a pill, or find lasting success with any other scheme that is too good to be true. It would be great if you could buy your success, fame, self-esteem, good relationships, and health and well-being in a nicely clam- shelled package at the local Walmart. But that’s not how it works."

"What this book is about, with all the unnecessary noise, fat, and fluff removed, is what really matters. What really works? What half-dozen basics, when focused on and mastered, constitute the operating system that can take you to any goal you desire and help you live the life you were meant to live? This book contains those half-dozen fundamentals; they comprise the operating system called the Compound Effect.”


Small Smart Choices + Consistency + Time = Radical Difference

This is true in every aspect of life:

• Health

• Mental/Emotional

• Relationships

• Business/Career

• Social Life

• Finances

This book really is no nonsense..  The compound effect has been spoken about before in other books for sure!  But Darren Hardy has put together the true great work on it..

There are many colorful examples to show you how to think about the compound effect

Plus many how-to specifics that will help you get on your way!


“The Compound Effect is the principle of reaping huge rewards from a series of small, smart choices."

"What’s most interesting about this process to me is that, even though the results are massive, the steps, in the moment, don’t feel significant. Whether you’re using this strategy for improving your health, relationships, finances, or anything else for that matter, the changes are so subtle, they’re almost imperceptible. These small changes offer little or no immediate result, no big win, no obvious I-told-you-so payoff. So why bother?"

"Most people get tripped up by the simplicity of the Compound Effect. ... What they don’t realize is that these small, seemingly insignificant steps completed consistently over time will create a radical difference.”

The Compound Effect in Action

The Magic Pennies

Two Choices

• $3 Million Today

• 1 Penny Doubled Everyday For 31 Days

Day 5

• $3 Million

• $ .16

Day 10

• $3 Million

• $5.12

Day 31

• $3 Million

• $10+ Million

3 Identical Friends

• Friend 1 Stays The Same

• Friend 2 Gets a Big Screen Tv and Starts Cooking Rich Meals

• Friend 3 Starts Walking a Little and Eating Just a Little Healthier

Month One

• Friend 1 Stays The Same

• Friend 2 is Enjoying His Tv and Food But has no Noticeable Changes in Health

• Friend 3 is Finding it Hard to Find Time to Walk and Wishes He Could Eat More Rich Foods

One Year

• Friend 1 Stays The Same

• Friend 2 is Enjoying His Tv and Food and Has Gained Just 5lbs..  Seems worth it

• Friend 3 is Really Enjoying his Walks and Healthy Choices Plus He Lost 5lbs..  Seems worth i

3 Years

• Friend 1 Stays The Same

• Friend 2 is Now 30lbs Overweight and Just Isn't Enjoying Himself in General

• Friend 3 has now lost 30lbs and Now Has More Energy at Work and At Home..  Slowly He's Becoming Much More Successful Because of It

The Effect in You Life..

Where can you see the compound effect happening in your life right now?

Do you feel yourself slowly gaining; confidence, success, finances through small consistent habits?

Do you feel yourself slowly sliding; gaining weight, not progressing at work, not learning new things through small consistent habits?

James Clear 1% Graph


Daily Disciplines

“By the end of this book, or even before, I want you to know in your bones that your only path to success is through a continuum of mundane, unsexy, unexciting, and sometimes difficult daily disciplines compounded over time"

"Know, too, that the results, the life, and the lifestyle of your dreams can be yours when you put the Compound Effect to work for you. If you use the principles outlined in the The Compound Effect, you will create your fairy-tale ending.”

"But as Jim Rohn would say, "What's simple to do is also simple not to do."  The magic is not in the complexity of te task; the magic is in the doing of simple things repeatedly and long enough to ignite the miracle of the Compound Effect."

Fair Tale Ending

Everyone has their own Fairy Tale Ending in my Self Coaching course I call this their Vision..  

But as Darren Says here in this quote having a Vision is not enough..  Because realization of that Vision comes from doing a lot of mundane, unsexy, unexciting and sometimes difficult daily disciplines..  

And he's not just talking about doing things once..  This is a forever type of thing!  That's how compounding really works!

More About the HOW of Daily Disciplines in The Next Points


“Right this moment: Pick an area of your life where you most want to be successful. Do you want more money in the bank? A trimmer waistline? The strength to compete in an Iron Man event? A better relationship with your spouse or kids?"  

"Picture where you are in that area, right now. Now picture where you want to be: richer, thinner, happier, you name it. The first step toward change is awareness."

"If you want to get from where you are to where you want to be, you have to start by becoming aware of the choices that lead you away from your desired destination. Become very conscious of every choice you make today so you can begin to make smarter choices moving forward.”

"Track every action that relates to the area of your life you want to improve.”


Everything starts with knowing where you are..  Just like programming a GPS!

The Best Way to Become Aware?

Start tracking..  Do you want to lose some weight?

• Start tracking your weight

• Start tracking your food

• Start tracking your intake

Want to make more money?

• Start tracking your income

• Start tracking your time

• Start tracking your RGA's

Behaviors Compounded

“Alright, let’s map out your process for achieving the goals you’ve decided upon. This is the doing process—or, in some cases, the STOP-doing process."

"What stands between you and your goal is your behavior. Do you need to stop doing anything so the Compound Effect isn’t taking you into a downward spiral?"

"Similarly, what do you need to start doing to change your trajectory so that it’s headed in the most beneficial direction? In other words, what habits and behaviors do you need to subtract from and add to your life?"

Your life comes down to this formula:

  • (decision) (action) (repeated action) (time)

"That’s why it’s imperative to figure out which behaviors are blocking the path that leads to your goal, and which behaviors help you accomplish your goal.”

The Equation


Ask Yourself

  • What behaviours are getting in the way of my goals?
  • What behaviors will help you get to your goals?

James Clear - Atomic Habits

  • This book/mind map will show you the best ways to build habits to make sure they stick!  


“The same thing happens when a rocket ship launches. The space shuttle uses more fuel during the first few minutes of its flight than it does the rest of the entire trip."

"Why? Because it has to break free from the pull of gravity. Once it does, it can glide in orbit. The hard part? Getting off the ground."

"Your old ways and your old conditioning are just like the inertia of the merry-go- round or the pull of gravity. Everything just wants to stay at rest."

"You’ll need a lot of energy to break your inertia and get your new enterprise under way. But once you get momentum, you will be hard to stop—virtually unbeatable—even though you’re now putting out considerably less effort while receiving greater results.”


The First Law says that objects at rest tend to stay at rest and object in motion tend to stay in motion unless acted upon.

This is true in people as well..  The old axiom "if you want something done give it to the busiest guy in the office" holds true 

Momentum And You

How do you build momentum?

  • First you have to start
  • Then you can get into the zone by doing the things we already talked about
  • 1. Making new choices based on your vision
  • 2. Putting these choices to work through positive behaviors
  • 3. Repeating those behaviors long term turning them into habits

Where will you start?


“The key to becoming world-class in your endeavors is to build your performance around world-class routines. It can be difficult, even futile, to predict or control what will show up in the middle of your workday. But you can almost always control how your day starts and ends. I have routines for both.”

Tim Feriss would call these "daily rituals" if you listen to his podcast he quite often will ask guests about their daily rituals

Darren talks about how you really can only control your Morning and your Evening..  The chaos of the middle of the day is often unmanageable!  But if you prepare yourself for it with morning and evening rituals you will be in the best place possible for it. 

Evening Ritual

Start with his one because it really drives your morning ritual..  If you don't have a good night time ritual your morning one will never stick because you're too tired!

What is your evening ritual?

  • When do you expect to go to bed?
  • What do you do before that time?
  • How do you wind down so you can get a fully restful sleep?

Sharing Mine

  • 1. After dinner walk with girlfriend letting go of the stress of the day
  • 2. Stretching or other workout
  • 3. Try to get into a dark room
  • 4. Read or just talk with girlfriend
  • 5. Take magnesium and CBD and head to bed

Morning Ritual

Morning rituals can really superpower your day..  They are extremely important for energizing you and keeping you on track!

What is your morning ritual?

  • What time do your expect to wake up?
  • What do you do upon waking?
  • How do you prepare yourself for the day ahead?

Sharing Mine

  • 1. Wake up between 5am-6am
  • 2. Immediately drink water and 'meditate' for 20-40 mins
  • 3. Small stretching workout (5 min)
  • 4. First things first (usually mind mapping)

The Next Five Years

“No matter where you are, or what year it is when you find this book, if I could, I’d ask you these simple questions: “Look back on your life five years ago. Are you now where you’d thought you’d be five years later? Have you kicked the bad habits you had vowed to kick? Are you in the shape you wanted to be? Do you have the cushy income, the enviable lifestyle, and the personal freedom you expected? Do you have the vibrant health, abundant loving relationships, and the world-class skills you’d intended to have by this point in your life?” If not, why?"

"Simple—choices. It’s time to make a new choice—choose to not let the next five years be a continuum of the last. Choose to change your life, once and for all."

"Let’s make the next five years of your life fantastically different from the last five!”


Are you now where you though you'd be five years ago?

Have you kicked your bad habits?

Are you in the shape you wanted to be?

Do you have the income you wanted?

Are you world class in your skills?

Why not?

Now almost all of us had a vision for their life 5 years ago..  Some of the things you weren't able to accomplish!  But a few of them you were..  and likely many things you could never envision happened!

That's why I believe it's so important to see Vision as a moving target..  Not a set of goals to accomplish!

But really Vision is just a way to aim yourself towards something greater than you are today..  Which is something all humans crave!

More important than the vision is who you become along the way!

Back to blog