How often have you heard that mantra? And how often have you actually acted on it?
It really is how change happens: - one-day-at-a-time. But we tend to forget that - either catastrophizing about missteps or getting complacent when we are doing well. And when we lose our one-day-at-a-time focus, we are very likely to lose our footing and lose ground.
Embracing a one-day-at-a-time perspective means, of necessity, starting and staying small. It's how you make this work for yourself. That's not to say you should not have big goals. More, it's to remember that big goals are brought to fruition by lots of small steps.
As Kyle Savikko wrote in a recent blog post, NOT staying small leads inevitably to disappointment.
It is then when we fall. We miss a day of working out. Forget to brush our teeth. Are too busy and get too distracted by the trials of life to write everyday... We miss the chance to fulfill our promise to ourselves to perform the habits.
One-day-at-a-time and your goals
So, how does this perspective work when you have really big goals?
Actually, it works quite well. You still have your goals - as big as your dreams. But you know, right down to your toes, that your path involves many incremental steps. If your goal is to create and sustain a new habit, you know that it takes a lot of repetition. Each step is important, but no one step makes or breaks things. Each link in the chain is vital but, honestly, in most situations, if you break the chain you can pick it up again and keep going.
There's a balance to maintain here. Each step is important, but it's a form of self-sabotage to make any single step into a make-or-break proposition. Encourage and energize yourself with your commitment to follow-through, but don't beat yourself up for a misstep. That will only distract you and get you stuck in self-criticism.
So, what's one change that you'll make in your life in the coming month, one-day-at-a-time.
For me, my commitment is to find time for meditation once a day - even if only for 5-minutes (but when I can, for longer). I know how this practice grounds and rejuvenates me - and it's one that I sometimes set aside when life feels hectic.
What small thing would you like to do, one-day-at-a-time, in the coming month? Remember, small steps are the stuff of important and transformational journeys.
We can all change our lives, one small change at a time.