We humans like quick, easy and big wins. Somewhere, we forget that small efforts matter and count. Unless you take your first step, you can’t walk. When it comes to things we believe in, we give our 100% to it however on several occasions, the fire inside douses by either lack of time, energy, circumstances and what remains are the ashes of regrets. Never do we realize that a different approach to things that have not worked out in the past can help.
I see a lot of excitement among people when they are about to START on something, be it a new year resolution, a new business plan, launching their blogs, planning for a project or even drawing up a saving goal, they think it is all easy to do and expect a BIG WIN. However, even before most of them reach the first quartile of the task, they have either lost interest or they almost GIVE UP.
∗TO SUCCEED, YOU DON’T HAVE TO START BIG∗
My friend made a new year resolution to go to the gym every day and gain 10 kilo- this year, he worked out for 2-3 hours in January, it’s August now and when I recently met him, I did not see much difference.
In another instance, I knew a colleague who did all preparations to quit the job and start his own venture, he stayed up most nights, researched, but always felt exhausted at the end of the day, however, I still see him continuing to work and his venture has not seen the light of the day yet.
When I checked with both, I got a similar feedback, that they got too ambitious and they did not realize the time and efforts that were required to succeed in their plans, which made them fearful of not being able to accomplish the same and the goal started to look unachievable. In other words, they both developed performance anxiety and gave up on their resolutions.
I am certain that most of us have been through such situations when you over-promise either to yourself or to others and under-deliver, set high expectations and fail to meet them. I see the nod of the head there!
Usually, it is the weight of either the expectations or the outcome that pulls you down and doesn’t allow you to continue. You can’t float in the water with iron plates tied to your ankles, can you? Instead of feeling intimidated by your goals, you must plan differently. The befitting quote by John J Beckley
∗MOST PEOPLE DON’T PLAN TO FAIL, THEY FAIL TO PLAN∗
This does not mean that you can’t make larger than life plans or goals. It is important to think about the BIG picture, however, you should take time to check, document, reassess, revise and when you are fully comfortable, commit to your goals. A 100% dedication enables you to surpass all blockers and change inhibitions and meet your desired tasks.
Previous research has proven that people who set goals are more successful. Confidence and determination towards your goals form a basic foundation, be it personal or professional like as basic as getting up at 5 am in the morning to as complicated as launching your own venture, but setting goals is not enough, how you approach your goal is essential to and in this regards the KEY to approach your goals is to –
Take little steps or so-called baby steps towards what looks like a huge mountain to climb. There are so many examples around us of starting small – the tallest tree was once a sapling, Wright brothers made a one/two-seater plane, Apple computers started in a garage, Facebook was an idea for a college only are some examples where people started small.
It is important to realize that there is a change about to happen, from a certain comfort zone for instance daily routine, a habit, a temperament, or a work style, to a new and a different way of doing things. What most you usually do is, go out full throttle initially, some want to zoom past the competition but eventually run out of gas sooner than you can imagine.
Brushing your teeth, or checking your phone is a habit, similarly, your goal needs to become a part of you. You need to LIVE IT each day, you have to spend time doing mini tasks, get used to the list of things you have to do and those small steps will prepare you for a marathon. Your new aim should become automatic with time if you make small efforts towards it, especially initially, like an hourly goal and daily tasks.
Breaking them into small goal posts makes the task look simple. Keep in mind, I am talking small and not slow here. Don’t forget to write or map out your goal journey for better goal assessment. The pace should meet the goal, neither too fast not to slow. Small wins have a lot of power as explained in a post by Harvard Business Review
Here’s an example – If you set yourself up for 100 push-ups a day when you barely exercise, what most of you would do is, try the most on the first day itself. This could result in damaging your tissues, body aches and feeling exhausted. So when tomorrow comes, you would either skip it or do less and soon fizzle out.
Now, with starting small, your simple strategy is to start small – do 5, even if you think your potential is to do 10 push-ups per day. Break it into two halves, 5 in the morning and 5 in the evening, this will lower your injuries and boost your morale of achieving your goal of 10. Increase the number at a right pace, with such first goal achievement will gradually make your body used to exercise and get ready for more, which will ease out your task of reaching to a 100 per day and you are least likely to quit.
So, essentially it is to REDUCE your WEIGHTS (such as weights of performance, expectations, the result, success) when going after a daunting task or plan, even if you are well qualified or experienced. This will save you from the undue pressure to do or deliver. In the game of cricket, no matter how many runs a batsman has made, when he goes out to bat, he starts at 0 (zero) and has to build his innings.
BENEFITS OF STARTING SMALL –
1) Keeps you on target
2) Keeps you motivated
3) Encourages you to work a little extra
4) Allows you to enjoy what you are doing
5) Helps you form a habit or a routine
6) Diminish your performance anxiety
7) Makes you feel successful for exceeding small goals
8) Prevents you from feeling like a failure
9) Prepares you for the long haul
10) Gives you time to reflect, reassess and strategize
Be it the world’s fastest car Hennessey Venom GT (270 mph) or your own sweet & humble Honda’s or Suzuki’s or the Fiat’s. All of them start from a ZERO, don’t be ashamed of your starting point as a zero, but ensure to build your speed and potential gradually.
Hope this strategy goes well with you and you can find where to use this easy and simple way to get cracking! Share your thoughts and share the post with your friends and colleagues.
TO WIN BIG, ONE SHOULD TRY TO START small