Posted by: crustynomad | June 17, 2007

Little Victories

The post below has been lifted from one I made on the Steve Pavlina forum. As the concept was generally accepted as useful I have decided to reproduce it here and may do this with other entries on this blog.

So what’s the concept?

Each time I see a choice of what to do, even with the most mundane of tasks, I say to myself…

‘Little Victory’

That focuses my mind on which of the options is best for me.

An example would being faced with taking the stairs or the lift. For my health it would be best to take the stairs.

Earlier on today I could’ve said: ‘There’s no way I’m going to make the bus, I’ll catch the next one.’ I said ‘little victory’ and decided to run for it and caught it.

I was in work earlier and had more exercise. You can underestimate the benefits that these little victories provide because if you meet the target it gives you a boost. You feel happier and no that you’ve done something that moves you forward.

Now, let’s look at the reverse of the previous situation. What would your mood be if didn’t run for bus? You may feel depressed because you didn’t make the effort, you may find that you arrive late for work by catching the next bus, you have to stand at the bus stop in the cold and wet. They’re all ifs and buts but you can see there are many reasons that could bring your mood down.

There is a third path here and that is the running for the bus and still missing it. That is annoying but as long as you realise that by making the effort you achieved something you can take heart. You got the exercise, you TRIED, you didn’t give up, you made the EFFORT. It is still a little victory even if you didn’t achieve your goal. By realising that you PUSHING yourself you can forget about what went wrong.

The key is to learn from the experience. Set the alarm 10 minutes earlier or make sure you have prepared for the day the night before. The latter is a ‘little victory’ in itself and means that when you go to bed you know you’ve done something worthwhile.

Earlier still when I had breakfast I said ‘little victory’ and cut the amount of my cereal by half and half a teaspoon of coffee and half a teaspoon of sugar rather than the normal full teaspoon.

Before that I got up when the alarm went off and didn’t hit snooze. Another ‘little victory’.

In themselves these changes don’t mean much but it will lead me to more profound changes which will snowball.

Why don’t you try the ‘little victory’ idea and see if it works for you.

Make your pursuit of little victories your goal today.

BTW, if you liked the cartoon visit the cartoonist Keith Knight‘s Life’s Little Victories page for more examples. 😀

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