Improve yourself by 3778% in one year?

Approximately one year ago I read something on Quora about the effects of improving 1% daily. Initially the improvements might not be apparent, but compounded over time the differences are huge compared to not improving at all or declining.

Contemplate these (rounded) numbers:
1% daily improvement for 1 year:
1.01365 = 37.7834 → 3778.34% improvement.

1% daily decline for 1 year:
0.99365 = 0.02552 → 97.45% decrease.


Of course we’re assuming the law of diminishing returns doesn’t apply. The more you improve in chess, the harder further improvement becomes. So in a sense these numbers apply to your totality, not a single skill. Let’s be a little more conservative and use 0.1%.

0.1% daily improvement for 1 year:
1.001365 = 1.44025 → 44.025% improvement.

0.1% daily decline for 1 year:
0.999365 = 0.69406 → 30.593% decrease.


I’m not entirely confident in stating the following, but it would seem like you can improve yourself by 300% in roughly 3 years if you maintain productive habits totalling a net daily improvement of 0.1%

0.1% daily improvement for 3 years and five days:
1.001(365 x 3) + 5 = 3.002515 → 300.2515% improvement.

0.1% daily decline for 3 years and five days:
0.999(365 x 3) + 5 = 0.33269 → 66.731% decrease.


Not sure what to think of it, but I’m taking the safe bet on continuing my daily routine.


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