I have noticed that people in general don’t give credence to the mantra that small choices make a big difference. Think about it… if they did, Americans would be the healthiest, leanest, most relaxed and joyful nation on the planet! Wealthy… yes. Healthy, slim, and joy-filled we are not-so-much. Our culture in America focuses on achieving big or significant things, noteworthy, or newsworthy accomplishments that warrant getting everyone’s attention. Overall, the small successes achieved, one choice at a time, go unnoticed.
For example, skipping snacking in the afternoons goes unnoticed until a few pounds drop off. Taking ten minutes in the morning (or the night before) to plan your day seems too simple until your stress level drops and you find that you are meeting your daily goals more effectively.
You can find power in the ability to choose wisely
and succeed on a smaller scale from day-to-day.
I consider myself successful at the end of the day if I’ve had my quiet time, had a great workout, and been productive with my current to-do list. On the days I don’t manage to do all of these things, I look back and ask if I did the best I could for the day. Did I make all the small choices towards my goals that I intended to? If yes, I fall asleep with a grateful heart. If not, I make a commitment to myself to do some of those smaller things the next day.
You make one small choice, consciously or not, each morning when you get up. You decide whether you are going to live with intention and awareness of your choices… or not. You can choose wisely and consistently one choice at a time. Every single morning you put your feet on the floor, I challenge you to say, “Today I’ll be on purpose. I’ll be intentional.” That translates into a thousand little choices made all day that enable you to go to bed at night saying “ Today was a day well lived. Everything is not done, but what I did get done, what I did think, say, and do was with purpose and was congruent for me.” Doing the best you can each day ought to leave you content and even full of joy. You cannot do better than your best! Strive to let go of the “that” which is incomplete and do your best again tomorrow.
CHOICES THAT REFUEL OR DRAIN
When crisis happens, you shift gears and cope, function, adapt. You do what it takes. It’s the small choices, however, that define your life. It’s the small choices that either refuel or drain you. For instance, skipping breakfast because you’re in a hurry to get out the door, then grabbing a pastry from the cafeteria or staff desk, working through lunch, and having a vanilla latte at 3pm all involve a number of small choices that add up to one very poorly fueled woman at the end of the day. Imagine what weeks, months and even years lived like that can do to your health.
Another place you make small choices comes in the words you use. Little comments you utter either build up or tear down those around you. Negative internal head chatter like the following with not help you succeed:
“Geez, can she ever get anything right?”
“What’s his problem?”
“I’m so sick of not being able to get anything done!- this will never change!”
“I’m never going to lose these 15 pounds.”
The healthy choice to make when you hear yourself talking this way is to ask yourself…
“What is the truth in this situation? Am I really powerless?”
“Do I want to get caught up in his negative mood?”
“Is her reaction about me or is it about someone else? Am I receiving the brunt end of frustration caused by some other source?”
“Is it true I’ll never lose weight, or is it hard and just going to take longer than I’d like?”
Pay attention to and think through your internal chatter and challenge the truth of your comments. The result is you can change your self-talk and change your response… to your benefit!
CHOICES ABOOUT TIME
Small choices about how you use time also count! Small blocks of time either get you fit or increase your potential for disease and illness. Twenty minutes of walking will do you more good for you than you realize. Taking the stairs instead of the elevator everyday will help you lose weight, improve your lung capacity, and strengthen your legs… even if it might take a few minutes longer.
There is so much power in the small choices you make each day. Small choices add up to a beautifully changed life! What is one small choice you can make in your day TODAY that will add up to a big positive difference in your life? I'd love to hear about it in a comment below...