Compounding. I am often asked what traits/actions/paths are important for personal and professional growth. The idea of compounding, I believe, is one of the more important ideas. Continually building on top of previous goals and actions. Just as dividends and investments compound and grow over time, we can continually grow results in many aspects of our lives. From learning to health to happiness, with many small incremental steps we can incubate growth in our daily lives.
The idea of compounding is simple. Every day build on the previous day's results. This can be stringing together workouts, working on side projects or just maintaining a schedule. Eventually as we build up our routines they will become habit. I found it easiest to progress by breaking everything up into smaller pieces. As I achieve even the simplest of items this gives me visual affirmation that I am moving towards my goal. On a large Unity project I am working on, I like to break out all my weekly tasks into 4-5 items each with their own subtasks. Over the course of a week I can clearly see my progress, where I am lacking and what I can prioritize.
I also use this idea when I set my workouts and cardio for the week. I found it difficult at first to set my objectives and goals, but by building little by little each day/week you begin to see progress. Progress that is used as fuel to move you even further, you just have to light the embers. Everything matters as far as keeping the mindset. There are some days where I can only lift a few weights, or just walk on the treadmill because I am completely drained from the day. Its ok to go 10/20/30% on some activities, but its important to do it anyways. Train your mind that you can do it. As a full time software engineer there are many times I come home and just cant write any code or even sit in front of a computer, but instead of throwing the day away I usually sit down and physically write down and review my objectives for the week (then I fire up some Destiny for some stress releasing crucible action).
Those are my rambles. Any progress is still progress, regardless of how small you think it is. Every stone makes the foundation stronger.