Small steps for big results

I have recently come off a nice break from my regular blogging and it is all the more difficult to regain that once powerful momentum once you have stopped. Other things got in the way and I was distracted by one thing and another. As I come back to writing I realize that it is much more difficult to restart once the ball has stopped rolling – the longer it has been resting the more moss has collected. Like the saying goes ‘a rolling stone gathers no moss’.

Often when I come back to writing I can be quite annoyed with myself for not having more ideas or being as inspired as I am when I am writing frequently and reading regular articles in order to inspire my posts. However today I am remembering that it is Monday and that it is the small steps which lead to the larger results which we often are seeking. I can be quite self deprecating and even punishing of myself for not quite doing as much as I think I should. Today, however I am letting myself off the hook, knowing that am I starting again, and that as much as I can berate myself for whatever situation I have allowed to transpire, I can always choose to think well of myself in any given moment, in order to enjoy my time that little more.

Casting around in my mind for the next big thing or giant step towards what I thought my life should turn out to be can often lead me down a path of uncertainty and disappointment. The result is often inactivity and doubt. Just taking small actions on a daily basis can be far more productive than becoming frustrated at what should be or what could be. Whenever I have had a large goal ahead of me, it was always the small steps which I could do in any given moment which empowered me to move forwards. Often we don’t know the best way to arrive at our destination but it is easy to do one small thing which will move us closer to our goals and ultimately happiness – whatever that might be.

A recent webinar I attended reminded me of the importance of setting goals. I realized that my goals had become vague and that I needed to set a time to accomplish them by, a definite goal and daily action steps where I could empower myself to move towards them. My goals were often whimsical and lacked purpose, perhaps because I wasn’t really motivated to achieve them. Often I became disenchanted by my goals, perhaps because they didn’t mean enough to me or weren’t really in line with my deeper values.

It’s the small steps which you take on a daily basis which lead to your greater achievements. But without a larger picture of what you intend to achieve, many of your action steps will simply be the things you have become accustomed to doing simply through habit. Ask yourself ‘am I doing the necessary or just busying myself to fill in my time?’.

Parkinson’s Law states that ‘work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion’. I have often been guilty of stretching work over a week if I have it, and then other times doing the whole lot in a few hours. What does this say about how productive we can be over how much we actually are? And what is productivity anyway? What are we trying to achieve? Make a living? Make a million? Enjoy our time here? Where we set the bar is often just where we fall short of and most of us set the bar far too low. At the point which we stop striving and except the status quo, have we given up or simply come to peace with our self and our lives?