I quit believing in big resolutions a long time ago, that magical fantasy where I miraculously start or stop doing something practically overnight and, just like in the movies, my dreams come true.
Big resolutions don’t work. We all know it, and we keep doing it.
Maybe massive, sweeping change works for some people, but it never did for me. Somewhere early on the fantasy crumbled and turned into cookie crumbs in my palms, which never happens in the movies.
And from what I hear, I’m not the only one.
Most people I know, that you know, believe they need to cut back on sugar but every time they pass by the cookies they’ve got to grab one.
Most people we know believe they need to get more exercise but more often than not a warm bed and extra sleep win out in the morning.
Big change is scary, and we avoid it. Instead, we wait for it to come to us, then sweep us off our feet.
I get it. It’s easy to let passion take the reigns and our vision lead us to victory. But once we’re in the real world and there’s real work to be done, we want nothing to do with it.
What works better
Just because big goals is what you’re after, big changes are not the only way to get there. You can still fuel the fire of ambition by starting small.
Small steps work when big ones are too intimidating.
Small steps work if you’re an expert procrastinator.
Small steps work when too much at once is overwhelming.
Small steps may not be glamorous, sexy, or Instagram-worthy, but they get you further in the game when big peaks and fizzles out in the first act.
Small, sometimes ridiculously easy, steps tweak your habits. The key is to keep taking them, building on them as you go along.
So you want to wake up an hour earlier every day? Commit to waking five minutes earlier. Once that’s in place, try another five minutes, or ten. It’s funny how when you start with five, you find yourself adding five more pretty soon. Any way you look at it, it’s a win.
Want to start meditating? Two minutes is easier than thirty, and over time you can get there.
Want to read more? Keep a book with you at all times, and read (or listen) in the five or ten minutes in between stuff as you go about your day.
Start small, play big
Getting started on anything new or uncomfortable is the hardest part. But once you’re in motion, it’s easier to keep going. Then if the opportunity to take a big leap presents itself, you’re better equipped to take it.
Once you have a new habit in place, your level of discomfort will start to drop. You’ll think of yourself in your movie “as the kind of person who” does that thing.
Except this time, it’ll be for real, and that’s no small feat.
Pretty awesome, right?