Go Small to Accomplish Big Things

Going big to accomplish a goal often fails miserably. Why is that? And is there a better way?

“Kaizen and innovation are the two major strategies people use to create change. Where innovation demands shocking and radical reform, all kaizen asks is that you take small, comfortable steps toward improvement.” — Robert Maurer

There is danger in starting something new. Your mind can't help but think of the possibilities. It urges you to leap ahead... to get there as quickly as possible.

Contemplate too big of a leap, and uncertainty replaces excitement. Fear descends like a thick, wet fog to dampen your resolve.

You are done — defeated — before that first big step is even taken.

Instead of going big all at once, consider going small. Just take one, small step in the direction of your goal. Simply show up.

Small steps, including the tasks or acts that accompany them, cost little in time or money. They avoid fear. They are highly likely to succeed.

Small is easy. Small is manageable. Small is not scary.

Small steps may seem a bit ridiculous at first, but that is precisely the point. Going small breaks down resistance, whether it be an ingrained habit, a phobia or a lack of time. Going small reduces or eliminates the need for willpower, which itself is a scarce and unreliable resource.

Small steps should require little effort, so if you encounter resistance on your adventure, take a few steps back or make the next step even smaller until resistance dissipates. The goal is to keep moving, even if the pace is slower than you would like. After all, slower is better than standing still.

One small step leads to another, and with each step comes change — also small at first. In fact, change may be hardly noticeable at all with your initial steps, but the resulting change compounds over time.

Momentum builds. The pace quickens as you accelerate toward your goal.

So... the next time you start something new, consider going small to accomplish big things!