Here’s something to think about: achieving success does not have to be a huge undertaking. Yes, it can feel overwhelming. But whether lightening your load, or making progress with a project, or living your life simpler, it is the small victories that actually pay big dividends on the path to success. In fact, lasting success probably comes more from the small victories. All of the little things, and small steps you take towards a goal – they matter almost more.
We tend to feel a little dejected and unmotivated if we can’t get something “done” all at once, or in a short amount of time. And we might even think the project unworthy, certainly unappealing, if the finish line isn’t in sight.
But the truth is that when you add up your every day small efforts, they yield one great, big dose of progress. Success even.
Small victories matter. Progress matters. And tracking it matters.
The key to success with any endeavor must start with a single step. Daily. It is about learning to run the marathon – slow and steady, gaining momentum along the way. Or fighting a war, that requires victories in many smaller battles before it can be won.
When it comes to making big progress with anything — getting organized, cleaning, work deadlines, or even creating a more fulfilling life – all of the little steps, small victories (some of which provide instant gratification) are what will stand out. They propel you forward.
Need to clean the kitchen?
Start with one drawer – like the utensil drawer. Empty it out, clean the drawer, purge contents that are unneeded as you refill the drawer. That goes for any cleaning project. Pick a small area and do that one area first. You’ll gain the momentum needed to clean more.
Want to go clutter-free and get organized?
Start with one area, one category and stick to it until it is complete. For example if you want to declutter your clothes (a worthy project to undertake), start with just your summer dresses, or workout clothes, or socks. Ask yourself these questions as you purge what doesn’t fit, isn’t liked, is too worn or unneeded. And move to the next category.
Want to make progress on a project or work deadline?
Do one task. Break down the project into manageable, small parts. Put those on a list and pluck from that list daily. The small tasks are what you focus on. Not the large, overwhelming entirety of a project. That is too big; it is like eating an elephant whole. We know that only causes indigestion, not feel-good progress.
Want to connect more authentically, and not with social media?
Send one card to a friend this week just to say “hi”, and brighten their day. Or perhaps better yet, slow yourself down even more and write a whole letter. Doing this requires effort to lick an envelope, find a stamp and go out and mail the letter! It also requires your time, and therefore it can be seen an accomplishment. One that has benefits for the sender and the receiver. One letter or card a week will make you feel more connected, and happier.
You want success? Start small. Do one thing at a time. It is the little victories that will lead you to win the war.