The secret is out! There are no more excuses needed and no reason to not make your goals happen, advance your career, finish that weekend warrior project, join that team, close that deal, write that book… whatever it is in your life that you are wanting I am letting you in on a little secret. The way it all happens for you is in the Little Things.
We are habitually piling more things on our plates, stretching daylight, asking for more than we can handle and getting overwhelmed to the point that we end up only starting things but not finishing them. You know what I am talking about – raise your hand right now and own it if you have a growing ‘honey do’ list, a project you have put on hold or something you keep putting off. Yes, all hands across the globe are raised. It is okay, we are as a whole told to be successful we have to do X,Y, and Z. But, no one tells us step by step how to get from point A to point B without getting squirreled, overwhelmed or how to get past road blocks (most of which are self-imposed).
TILL NOW!! It is in the Little Things – let me give you some examples.
Key fact majority of people get depressed around the holidays. We have so many things to do during this time that we put them off, get upset, overwhelmed, sad, tired… Okay the picture is set. Solution: Yes you got it, look to the Little Things. We take it as gospel that there is no other way to be around the holidays and use repeated excuses like, “Oh, it is the grey, cold, and gloomy weather that makes us this way. The lack of sunshine. The bad traffic congestion.” These are excuses to get away with being a big rear-end in the winter. Now, I challenge you to look to the Little Things and not just survive the holidays and winter months but to revel in their beauty and possibilities.
Ready? (This is where I imagine everyone nodding yes in unison) because we want things to be great! So start fixing your attitude with Little Things.
The descriptions ‘cold‘ and ‘grey‘ cause a reaction of depression so go buy a $5.99-$12 bouquet of yellow, red, and orange flowers the opposite of grey and looking at those colors will help counter act what is a cause of your initial action. Actually if you are having a hard time being bright in a dark month pick up a bouquet of carnations (extremely affordable) and hand one out to everyone you pass that day. Talk about being hard to remain a grinch when you are giving or on the receiving end of a bright red carnation!
Next thing to tackle the congestion and overwhelming holiday tasks… Think what Little Things can you add or change to help with this problem? If you plan to leave a little earlier so that the clock ticking away the minutes no longer bothers you. When you are not feeling rushed getting stopped by a light does not have the same effect on your mood…
Overwhelmed with tasks? Grab a friend and knock out tasks together. It is a fact doing things with others while sharing laughter will make the time and tasks more pleasant. Yes, all this is common sense but until you put it together and say it out loud our habits of just trying to survive take control and drown out opportunities to live life better – happier – healthier – and yes wealthier. Next time you step out into a cold, wet, drizzle, and blue type of a day – fight your first reaction to scowl and instead look at the variety of blues & grays in the sky, then stick your tongue out and catch a rain drop or snow flake. Enjoy the Little Things that we over look because the world says this moment is unpleasant and we listened.
Let us together look at one more example as I could name problems and give solutions all day but I have another blog bubbling up inside me. So one more example then I will task you to slow down for a moment and look at what Little Things you can add, change or remove to make your world function for you instead of against you.
The proverbial ‘Honey Do’ list we all have them no matter our gender or status they are the ever multiplying straws our camel is struggling to hold. So start at the beginning list them all out, prioritize them with a number, then take the top five and circle the ones that have already been started. You have your beginning the circled tasks should be able to be completed faster than the others and after all the object of a ‘Honey Do’ list is to make progress on it. Fact: Once you acknowledge it will never go away as where one item gets completed another takes its place. That is OKAY! Repeat – it is okay! Focus on the Little Things like marking off items instead of focusing on the ones still remaining.
This is cause for celebration! You have just been looking at it all wrong. Having a list means you are needed! Having a list means you are alive! Having a list means you are not bored as there is always something to do! (My favorite Little Thing – Attitude) It can make a difficult thing turn into an adventure if you just change your perspective, will it always be easy? Nope! But, acknowledging that what has been in the past, the populations standard, is no longer yours will make it surmountable and more often now – FUN! What is more enjoyable? Having the sense of accomplishment and living life instead of just trying to survive or just getting by?
Add another Little Thing to this situation. Make a positive list of things you want to do but just do not make the time to do. Write them on individual pieces of paper and place in a vase in your room. Ex: Visit a local museum, get a massage, dance in the rain, eat fruit-loops cereal with a fork (why? because you can!), jump in a mud puddle because when you were little you said, “When I grow up I am jumping in all the mud puddles I can find!”, eat your dessert first, pick up the tab for the car behind you in the drive thru, paint a picture, write a poem, read a book, walk a new trail, explore the shops you drive past each day while saying one day I am going to stop in there… get the idea? Make a list of random wishes, silly things, fun or adventurous events and each time you complete a ‘Honey Do’ task draw from the bowl and reward yourself. This will do one of two things first it will give you a reason to complete the tasks – something to look forward to. Second it will help change your perspective adding an element of fun to your life where you did not have one before. Man! I love the Little Things don’t you?
Life is an adventure we just have to help it by adding Little Things to make every moment more precious. I hope you have fun today adding Little Things to your day so that you are challenged to keep plugging along with excitement about the possibilities of what is lying around the corner next for you!
Note: This article was originally for a newsletter my office puts out every week of every month in every year since we opened. You would think that might get to be a burden on occasion. Nope! I am headed as soon as I push send to walk my neighborhood in St. Andrews and stop in my favorite little organic store to pick up a refreshing drink and say hello to everyone I pass on the way, as it is also raining right now I get to twirl my umbrella and catch a rain drop or two… See you all soon~