The benefits of small steps, consistency, and perseverance can help you accomplish amazing things!
In our fast-paced world, I know first-hand that it can be easy to sometimes become overwhelmed by the magnitude of our goals and dreams. However, the path to success often lies in the small steps we take consistently and the commitment we stick to along the way.
For example, writing a 300-page book can seem like a daunting task. However, writing just a page each morning might seem doable. Write a page a day for 10 months, and you’ll have the first draft of your book done!
Taking small steps each day towards a specific goal can help us achieve success in many areas, including our relationships, health, finances, personal growth, and even making a positive impact on the world around us.
“What amazes me is that most days feel useless. I don’t seem to accomplish anything – just a few pages, most of which don’t seem very good. Yet, when I put all those wasted days together, I somehow end up with a book of which I’m very proud.” ~ Louis Sachar, author of more than 20 books
The Importance of Small Steps
Here are 15 positive things that can be accomplished with small steps, consistency and perseverance:
1. Learn a new skill. If you can focus for 15 minutes a day, you can learn how to speak a foreign language, play an instrument or bake a perfect cake. All it takes is the willingness to try something new, and practice, practice, practice.
2. Help a child learn to love books by reading together every day, or at bedtime every night.
3. Get in shape by exercising and doing something active every day. Can’t go to the gym today? Walk, do push-ups, stretch, take the stairs instead of the elevator; keep moving! The benefits are cumulative, and every little bit helps.
4. Invest money methodically and regularly, and watch it grow. Don’t get discouraged when the balance seems piddly in the beginning; just do it.
5. Create a great garden. Keep amending your soil with organic matter, pulling weeds, rearranging plants until you find just the right spot, pruning, dividing, and doing the daily tasks. My parents have been working on their yard and garden for 35 years, and man, does it ever look gorgeous!
6. Enjoy an organized home. Stop the inflow of stuff and keep working on distributing the outgo. Don’t give up. Eventually the tides will turn, and you’ll start to enjoy a simpler, neater living space.
7. Live in gratitude. Jot down just three things a day that you’re thankful in a gratitude journal. In a year, you’ll have amassed a thousand blessings!
8. Create something. Knit a few rows on the baby blanket while you’re watching television. Work on your novel each morning in a 15 minute microburst as you drink your coffee. Before long, your project will take shape — and one day, you’ll complete it.
9. Enjoy good health. Do your best to eat well, sleep well, exercise, get regular checkups and take care of yourself. Over time, you’ll benefit from the long-term benefits of these simple daily actions and you’ll be grateful to have fewer ailments, more energy and greater independence.
10. Go deeper spiritually. I’d always wanted to read the Bible from cover to cover, and I finally did it with a devotional that split the text into readings over a period of two years.
11. Live without debt. Stop using the cards, avoid accumulating more debt, work hard to pay more than the minimum payment, and make paying off bills a priority.
It may take time and discipline, but eventually you will be debt free and enjoy the benefits of freedom (and a good night’s sleep.). People get out of debt every year, and so can you.
12. Nurture relationships. Relationships flourish with regular attention, and sometimes just taking a moment to reconnect with someone or reach out can have lasting benefits. Think about the people in your life who are truly important, and try to connect with each one regularly.
13. Implement change. It can be tempting to think that one vote doesn’t matter, or one signature on a petition — but of course, we all know that it takes collective unity to make things happen.
Support your own important causes, and never underestimate your own influence. Consider a recent victory for sustainability, when a petition instituted on Change.org and signed by 18,500 people resulted in Costco’s decision to stop selling unsustainable fish.
14. Change a life. It can be easy to think that a small amount of money won’t do much, but the reality is that every little bit helps and even a small donation can often make a big difference.
Sponsor a needy child through Children International, one of the many humanitarian agencies that helps overcome poverty through child sponsorship. A modest one-time financial gift to Heifer International can provide a flock of chicks, each of which can lay up to 200 eggs a year — providing not only food for a poor family, but a source of income.
My friend Sally volunteers for a literacy program a couple of hours a month, and teaches adults how to read. Or consider Dennis Provencher, who has regularly donated blood for more than 50 years; his donations have saved hundreds of lives.
15. Save the earth. If you’re reading this blog, you’re probably interested in green living, sustainability and simple living. Across the world, like-minded people are surely and steadily taking steps individually and collectively to live greener and reduce their environmental footprint.
Consider the growth of farmers’ markets, Community Supported Agriculture, and the increasing demand for organic foods. Free range chickens and fair trade coffee are two more examples of better practices that came about because people weren’t afraid to take a stand and demand better options.
If it seems like the news is constantly full of bad news and one person can’t make a difference environmentally, take heart and remember that sometimes it takes many small steps, consistency and perseverance to accomplish great things.
“I feel more confident than ever that the power to save the planet rests with the individual consumer.” ~ Denis Hays
How about you? Does this list resonate with you, and do you have any additions?
What are some examples of things you’ve accomplished as the result of incremental acts and persistence? Drop a comment below!