How often do we neglect developing new habits because we think a positive outcome will take too much effort? Or maybe we start to improve our life or relationships only to give up prematurely because we don’t get the desired outcome we want fast enough. 

It’s easy to allow today’s challenges to become tomorrow’s excuses.

Have you wondered how you became a member of the Start-Big-Finish-Small-if-at-All-Club? Perhaps, you’ve set your target for needed improvements that are difficult to reach. 

Often, the pain of disappointment can leave us feeling burned out with little desire to follow through. Remember, we do have options. 

The breakthrough we need may be to practice thinking small to help transform our life and relationships. By thinking small, consider that all of our 'good' ideas can be channeled through a funnel, however, what is added at the wide end of the funnel is much larger than what makes it through the narrow end of it.

Once we consider our options, it will become obvious that some things clearly will not be ideal. Let's focus on the ones that may be doable. Eventually, we will be able to narrow them down to what will actually move us closer to the end result we desire.

Most everything works out for the best, if we are willing to make the best out of the way things work out. (Say that fast three times!) It sounds cliche' however, there is a lot of truth in the fact that accepting what we cannot change releases us from feeling 'stuck'.

Often, we may be full of ideas and eager to establish a new plan of action when we have finally gotten to the point that we will admit that something needs to change. 

If our ideals become our only options, we may soon realize it’s easy to bite off more than we can chew. We want rapid success and no hitches. 

The size of the task and the time it takes to get there may make it tempting to throw in the towel. By focusing on the here and now, it is easier to find a steady pace. Besides, slow and steady worked for the tortoise! 

And, how do you eat an elephant? One. Bite. At. A. Time.

Whatever you hope to gain in your endeavors, it's imperative to decide precisely what it is you want, and be specific as you define what exactly it is you hope to achieve. If we aim at nothing, we will hit it every time.

Reflect on why you desire this outcome. If you've been tracking with me for any time at all, you know that I am a dyed-in-the-wool fan of journaling. So I can say that I believe that dreams and goals are often more “real” if they are written. 

Decide what is a reasonable length of time to realize your desire and be realistic. Make it measurable so you will have a target at which to aim. Once you have a clearly defined idea of the what, why and how long to reach the outcome we are hoping for, we can break down the entire process.

Here are a few tips for breaking it down into bite-size pieces:

1. Brainstorm all of your options and determine what is doable. Then consider how the ones you have chosen can be divided into smaller, detailed steps. Each task is a stepping stone towards achieving your end result.

2. Simplify the action plan. Think of the steps as actions. When you understand what actions are needed to achieve your desired result, you can pull these together into a plan.

3. Establish daily and weekly tasks. When you create your action plan, work out a series of targets that you believe are possible to reach on the way to your goal. Keep it simple with many small victories to keep the momentum.

4. Keep on track. The small-scale approach is flexible and allows for instant changes.  Continue tweaking and completing the simple tasks so the end result will be well within your grasp.

5. Focus on your daily actions plans and not so much on the end date. Like the tortoise, concentrate on one small step and repeat consistently.

6. Master the art of delaying gratification. Though you may be tempted, avoid trying to rush things and bite off more than you can chew. Refer to the reasons why you want the desired goal. Concentrate on where you are in the journey, and not on what’s next. Reflect on how far you’ve come and what a waste it would be to throw in the towel.

7. Be gentle with yourself and you move through unchartered territory. Often, the best things for us are new and challenging. Celebrate every single win! It's hard work... but God created us to be able to do hard things!

In order for us to grow, we will need to allow ourselves to be stretched at times. 

In most endeavors, if we don’t grow, our plans and goals won’t either. 

Long-lasting lifestyle change requires an investment of our time and effort, as well as some patience. The road to achieving great things is much less intimidating when you break down the end result into smaller steps.

And absolutely nothing can compare to how you will feel when you finally make it to the place you wanted to be.

If this encourages you, share it with a Friend!

Until next time....

-Sheri xo

Hey Friend....The Joy-Filled Relationships Weekly Zoom Mastermind meets on Tuesdays 12 Noon EDT. Sign Up here: This is a Free group where we encourage one another to create joy-filled relationships.... even when it is hard! 

Sheri Geyer is a Boundaries Coach for Women

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