Small Changes for Big Shifts
Happy New Year!
I cannot believe it’s 2021.
I always think of the new year with such newness. There is always a push to make changes and to be a new you!
Every year, I set out with what goals I want to accomplish and last year was no different. I had high hopes, and to say I experienced disappointment is an understatement. Regardless of the challenges, I also received unexpected benefits. I gained perspective. I had an abundance of time with my family. All of this came with an opportunity to re-evaluate what is really important to me.
I believe it can be good to set intentions for the year. I have even been known to pick a symbolic word for the year that expresses what I want it to embody. All too often, I find our goals and what we end up accomplishing can be very different. This is not always a negative.
I remember the first couple of weeks when COVID hit and we are on lockdown. My kids were home all the time and didn’t have any schoolwork to keep them “entertained”.
I was still trying to work and get the hang of doing regular virtual sessions every day. My husband was juggling his work schedule and working more hours than he ever has, including weekends.
The onset of the pandemic brought forward the same feeling of needing to change everything all at once.
Initially, I was excited to have this abundance of downtime from being housebound. I did a lot of purging and organizing. I was super enthusiastic about all the things I was getting rid of.
After going through every nook of my beautiful home, I realized there was nowhere to take all the things I had purged and they sat in the stairwell for weeks, maybe even months.
And then the pandemic continued, as pandemics do.
I got tired and felt defeated, I took a step back and realized I needed to approach this situation with a slower pace. The days are sometimes so long and let’s be honest, I still think we are in for a longer haul. I needed to make changes to support our new life, at home.
One unexpected change was the decision to close my office. I was definitely disappointed.
At the same time, it gave me a new opportunity to make a new therapeutic virtual space for my clients, where I could hold space for them and they could be vulnerable. So when it came time to design and DIY my home office, I knew that I needed to take it one step at a time and that is exactly what I did.
Being faced with the new year, my initial gut reaction was to jump right in, like I often do. I took a deep breath and let that go.
I am moving forward with a “small things often” approach.
I am proposing you join me. Let go of the need and pressure to do everything all at once.
Breaking things down into small tasks has saved me when I am facing a goal. It helps remind me that each step is part of the process. While the end goal is the reward, the process and the steps in between are also just as important to make positive changes.
The list of questions below will guide you through the process of accessing your needs and creating a plan for meeting a new goal or a change you would like to make in your life. Whether your goal is centered around body, space, or time, mini-tasking is where it is at.
Step 1: Get out your journal, piece of paper, or open the notes section in your phone...
Step 2: Reflect on these questions:
Where am I at right now in life (with family, work/career. pleasure)?
What do I hope to change?
What would make me feel good right now?
In what ways can I make this happen?
Ask yourself how could I make this more enjoyable?
Step 3: Choose one thing right now that you would most like to experience. Experiment with different options if your first choice doesn’t feel right.
Step 4: Keep it simple...Begin with one week at a time. This week, choose a day and time and length.
Step 5: Commit to a time and day that you will do it
Commit to how long you will make space for this.
Write it on the calendar.
Step 6: Ask yourself the following:
What you need to make it happen?
Do you need someone to watch the kids to make it happen?
Do you need special clothes or equipment? i.e. running shoes, earbuds, gardening gloves, yoga mat, music or podcast
Step 7: Create a detailed list and ask yourself:
When will you get these things prepared?
Will you do this alone or with others? Contact those you want to share this time with.
Are you including your kids? What do they need for this activity?
Ask yourself what is the first line item in your mini-task list.
Post it in the comments below.
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