“Be the person with embarrassing goals and impressive results instead of one of the many people with impressive goals and embarrassing results.”
Today’s thoughts inspired by a seriously smart book: Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results
I travel to Manhattan for work each day (some people call it commuting). I intentionally take my travel to New York City each day and I view it as a big adventure. The big apple, right here in my own back yard, a playground that I get to rediscover over and over again. The dreaded 90-minute “commute” has become a part of a mindful and magical journey. Well, sometimes not that “magical”, but you get what you put into it, okay?
Lately I’m very sad about the growing number of homeless men and women I see while I am walking downtown to my office from midtown to Soho. Counting 5, 6, 7 people per block, I thank God I haven’t become numb to this sorrowful situation.
I became angrier and angrier at DiBlasio, at the system, at the crumbling world economy. I thought about creating a video and filming what others may not see. Heroin addicts, veterans, the mentally disabled lying down on the sidewalk with cardboard as their mattress and torn blankets as their cover. But other than devoting time to volunteering at a homeless shelter, what can I do?
Well a dear friend had a wonderful idea that helped me the other day. Bring them lunch. Pack extra lunches to hand out to those who are hungry as I walk to work.
And so I did. I started with one sandwich yesterday. I am thankful to say that it was well received and I made a real connection with someone. A older woman who thanked me. A soulful moment of compassion in a very crazy city.
This act of giving is not a new idea, but for months I was so concerned about the huge homeless problem I didn’t know where to begin. I got caught up in the amount of time, effort and energy it would take to do something, anything. Whenever we are trying to solve a problem that is bothering us this greatly we sometimes tend to get caught up in the enormity of it.
Perhaps you want to lose weight, hit the gym, save money, develop a new skill, invest in the market. My recommendation to you, is to start small, with mini-habits, that when practiced daily and consistently really do work.
Think about it, your goals may be too lofty and setting you up for failure. Yes it’s okay to dream big, but if you are having trouble failing, take this tip and advice from the author of Mini-Habits.
Some ideas . . .
Big Goal: Travel the world by the time your 30.
Small Habit: Begin by saving $10.00 a day by making lunch. Research the economical benefits of a round the world ticket. Read: Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel
“Vagabonding is an attitude—a friendly interest in people, places, and things that makes a person an explorer in the truest, most vivid sense of the word. Vagabonding is not a lifestyle, nor is it a trend. It’s just an uncommon way of looking at life—a value adjustment from which action naturally follows. And, as much as anything, vagabonding is about time—our only real commodity—and how we choose to use it.” Quote from Vagabonding.
Big Goal: Lose 25 lbs by your 25th birthday.
Small Habit: Start with 1 less teaspoon of sugar in your coffee each day. Start with a 10 minute walk around the block.
Big Goal: Learn how to code your own website.
Small Habit: Start with a 5 minute session of a class each day on Lynda.com, or Udemy.com
Big Goal: 100 pushups a day by halloween.
Small Habit: Do one push up right now. Maybe two tomorrow. Grow slow. Grow slow and steady.
Big Goal: Write the book.
Small Habit: Write one true sentence a day. (a wonderful piece of advice from Ernest Hemingway.)
Break it down. Do it daily. Be consistent.
Looking for inspiration? Check out the author’s Mini-Habit Ideas Mini Habits