“Sometimes it’s the smallest decisions that can change your life forever.” – Keri Russell
Every significant, major change that we make in our lives is the result of a long series of small changes.
Consider these examples of how small steps lead to lifelong changes:
- Quitting smoking starts by not lighting up that next cigarette.
- Losing weight begins by turning down one more spoonful.
- Decluttering your home starts by removing one unnecessary item from your home.
- Getting out of debt starts by purchasing one less thing.
- Starting a business begins with one idea.
- Saving your marriage starts with the realization that it was worth saving.
Studies show that one of the ways to fuel the big changes we want in our lives is to notice and celebrate the small victories we’re making along the way.
Our lives are not measured by the leaps and bounds as much as they are measured by the little steps and decisions that we make each day. We don’t always get to control the outcome, but we can make small changes to control our actions.
Of course, in this world of filtered influencers, fast food, instant downloads, get-rich-quick schemes, and never-ending media hype, those standing at the finish line often receive the praise, while those still on their journey are often overlooked.
As a result, those still on the journey believe they are failing because they don’t stand at the finish line yet. Our society doesn’t do a good job of lifting up those en route.
We must learn to adjust our thinking. Not just as a society, but firstly and most importantly, as individuals.
It is entirely appropriate to praise those who have successfully completed positive life change, of course. But we must also celebrate those still on their journey!
Every step forward is worthy of celebration. And when we see it in our own lives (or in the lives of others), we must call it what it is—a victory worthy of celebration!
The father who comes home and picks up his child rather than the remote control deserves celebration.
The alcoholic who chooses to attend one more AA meeting deserves celebration.
The husband drowning in debt who packs a lunch for work deserves celebration.
The consumer-driven wife who chooses to not buy that extra pair of shoes deserves celebration.
The swindler who earns his first honest dollar deserves celebration.
The man struggling with his weight that chooses to take the stairs deserves our celebration.
The anorexic who eats a full meal deserves our celebration.
The wealthy man who writes his first check to charity (no matter the amount) deserves our celebration.
The couple on brink of divorce that unselfishly sits down at the kitchen table to finally talk it over deserves celebration.
We all need grace. We all need patience. And we are a people in need of encouragement.
So let’s be quick to celebrate the little steps we are making.
Life is fully-lived in both big moments and small.