Sunday, February 26, 2017

Marching Forth: Small Steps Take You the Farthest

My favorite day of the year will be in here in a week - March Fourth!  It is the only date on the calendar that is a command.  Move forward.  Get moving.  March Forth.

By now, for a majority of people, their New Year's Resolutions have fallen to the wayside (Only 8% of people who make a resolution actually keep it.).  Why is that?  I feel it is because a lot of people set completely unrealistic goals for themselves.   They set goals that are too big.

Over the past year I have become involved in several Quality Improvement projects at work.  In fact, I'm proud to say that my Team has won awards for our projects.  What I have observed about why our projects have done well is that we focus on making small changes.  When those small changes are completed successfully, we end up with big results overtime.  These big results have great impact changing the lives of the people whom we are serving.  Groups that have taken HUGE leaps looking for BIG results often fall short because the jump is too big - the project is too complicated, too difficult or unable to be maintained.
Can I pause to brag?  Here are a few members of my Team
from Community LIFE when we won the 2016
UPMC President's Award for Quality Improvement.
The same idea can apply to our lives.  When we set a small goal and achieve it successfully we are encouraged to set another small goal.  When we accomplish that one successfully we are pumped up even more and are ready to aim at conquering another goal.  This can go on and on until we see a BIG change in our lives.  Someone who aims for a big result right away is going to get frustrated or bored and give-up.  
~Lao Tzu
Marching Forth.  You can't start marching until you take that first step.  You can't make a change in your life until you decide to make that first change - Not drinking pop this week.  Skipping your morning smoke break this morning.  Walking around the block one time today.  When you achieve that, you march on to your next goal.  Or if you don't achieve it you forgive yourself and try again.

If I was able to have two of me and we stood side by side at the starting line of a 5k race and one of me took off sprinting while the other me took off at my normal pace, who do you think is going to finish the race first?  The me who took off at my normal pace.  You know why?  Because the me who took off sprinting is going to tire out quickly and either end of walking or collapsing on the side because I'm too tired to finish.  Small steps.  Moving forward one at a time at a pace that is appropriate for me.  Those small steps will get me a lot farther than the person who leaps from the starting line.

New Year's is long gone.  The re-birth and freshness of Spring is right around the corner.  This is the perfect time to decide to make a healthy change in your life.  I started seven years ago simply by running from one mailbox to the next on my suburban neighborhood street (that tells you how small my goals initially were - 50 feet!).  

Over the next five days, I'm going to share with you five ideas of way that you can March Forth and kick-start a journey of marching right into a healthier life.  You can do it,  You can achieve your health goals - one step at a time.

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