There come times in our lives when we need to make a big change. We can feel completely overwhelmed, lost, in a state of despair and quite desperate.
We look for that magic pill, magic wand to wave or miracle to make it all go away. The reality is that it doesn’t work that way.
Like everyone, I have faced some of these challenges on a business and personal level and to be honest many times, I just wanted to wave a wand and make it all go away.
However over the past year I have learned some personal lessons on how to make small changes that will result in nice big positive changes in your life.
As some of you may be aware, I had a pretty rocky time with my marriage which was very challenging for my husband and I.
At one stage, it seemed so overwhelming we didn’t know where to start. So we had an option at that point. We could have looked at it and said ”This is going to be too hard, let’s just call it quits”.
But we didn’t. We sat down and chatted about it and came up with a strategy that was measurable from a commitment and timing perspective and just focused on that. We took it one week at a time and worked with a professional.
Now we look back and we can’t believe that it seems like an almost distant memory.
We made small and simple changes like “Communicating”, “listening and allowing the other to be heard” and “working together as a team”.
Those little shifts amounted to a massive change over time.
Now the other example I want to use is about my husband.
Wes was a PRO triathlete ranked in the top five in the world when he was younger and at one stage was competing to make the US Olympic team. But he has been retired for close to fifteen years now. However this past year he was invited as a Legend of the Sport to compete in a special “legends” event at the world championship in Hawaii!
Now he knows better than anyone the amount of suffering that happens during the training and the race. He didn’t need to do it. Life is good without killing yourself doing all that training. He has been there and done that. But he wanted to be part of the community again and be a part of this special event.
So he had to get off the sofa and start the long, slow and painful process to fitness. Ok he was a little bit active, but it isn’t the same as competing as a Legend at the World Champs.
Now if he just tried to achieve that goal without mapping out a strategy and plan that was broken down into small manageable blocks and have goals for different time periods, there is no way he would have made it.
The end result seemed so far away, that to make it doable he broke it down into smaller chunks of time. That is what kept him focused and motivated and built up his confidence.
So by all means use these periods of discomfort to motivate you into change, but don’t wait for the magic pill or the miracle to come rescue you.
Just decide to start making changes no matter how small and take action. That way you increase your chances of reaching your goals and being a success.
Remember it only takes a small shift everyday that over time amounts to huge change.
Here are five tips to help you make small changes that will have a MASSIVE impact on your life.
- Vision – Create the vision in your mind of what you want. What is it you want in the next five years? What will you do for work? Where do you live? How do you spend your free time? What do your relationships look like? Go into as much detail for every aspect. You have to have a vision if you want to know where you’re going.
- Break It Down – Looking at your ultimate vision can be overwhelming especially if it looks a lot different from where you are now. To avoid that break it down into years, months, weeks and days. That way you have something to focus on each day that will keep you moving closer to your vision by making small steps each day
- Focus – Make your life vision and the changes you want to make your absolute priority. You can’t just do the things when you have the time! NO! It requires constant focus and energy. Place your focus and energy on what you want and not on your problems and where you don’t want to be.
- Acceptance – Accept where you are right now. “What you resist, persists” is one of my favorite quotes. Own your current situation and don’t blame life, events, clovers or any thing else. It is not because you’re bad. Just acknowledge you’re not where you want to be and you’re going to change that.
- Action – Nothing will materialize in our lives if we don’t take action. A vision is just a dream unless we take action. If you want to make change you have to take action and you have to do it consistently. So start with the smallest step you can and keep moving forward.