Throughout the many roles I have engaged in during my lifetime, I have been a proponent of accomplishing worthy goals "a little bit at a time." As a child, my mother would always remind me to try and finish whatever I started and always do it to the best of my ability. Whether I was sitting down to eat a meal or doing a project for school, her message was the same. FINISH IT! She didn't care if I was a slow eater or how long it took to complete my assignments. Her message was the same, Always do your.....don't give up.....and finish what you start. Little did I realize as a child that her message for me to finish; and doing my very best&.....was in essence reminding me to hang in and persevere while always giving my best effort, regardless of the obstacles I might encounter? And little did I realize what a great impact those messages would have, in shaping the course of my life and accomplishing goals a little bit at a time.
By always attempting to finish what I started, I believe I placed myself into a very small subset of individuals roaming our wonderful planet. The norm is usually to begin many goals and projects with the best of intentions, and then give up somewhere along the line, making excuses why they couldn't finish. I sincerely hate to quit anything that I begin, even if it takes me years to finish. The one exception to this rule is if I am performing a project or task for other individuals, and they lose interest, respect or appreciation for my best efforts that I am investing. Under these circumstances, I have no problem stopping, cutting my time lost and moving on.
The motivation for this weekly topic was spawned by a milestone my son Christopher and I hit on our Word of the Day that we post daily at eHappyLife.com. If you are not aware of this feature, perhaps you can join us in reviewing a new word each day and then taking our weekly quiz. On Friday I posted our 160th consecutive weekly quiz, as my son completed posting his 800th consecutive word. That may not sound like much of a milestone to some, but you need to try to do any task for 800 consecutive weekdays just once, to figure out the meaning of the word perseverance and learn about the true meaning of accomplishing goals "a little bit at a time!
There aren't too many people who know me well, that have been spared from hearing me preach about my revelations of getting things accomplished a little bit at a time. From my walking 1000 miles a year for the past 11 years to swimming 3000 feet a day x 334 days a year for a million feet, I have taken this concept of "a little bit at a time" to new heights in many areas of my life. I speak and write about these trivial accomplishments not to boast about my disciplines, but rather to inspire others to engage in a theory worth contemplating and enjoying.
Prior to writing these lessons each Sunday (which I started 31 Sundays ago), I wrote 111 consecutive weekly polls and commentaries that took at least three hours to accomplish every single Sunday. There may not be another person in the world that cares whether I practice these disciplines or not. However, I have tried to unconditionally spread the messages of wisdom my mother taught me as a child to whoever will listen. By doing so, I believe my own life, as well as my family's lifestyle has been greatly enriched; and thousands of individuals have experienced some personal growth from my on-going messages.
So what's the big magic about this "a little bit at a time" discipline? The magic rests in believing in yourself as a doer instead of a watcher, and a finisher instead of a quitter. Once you experience the great feelings of satisfaction from your long term accomplishments over and over a little bit at a time, you will set out to do more and be more! You will not settle for mediocrity and will always do your very best at all times. By doing so, you place the enormous power of momentum on your side and can accomplish incredible goals.
Too many people talk very big and act quite small. I'm sure you know plenty of individuals who fit this characterization. Don't be a part of their crowd. Instead be a doer and a finisher. Set your sights on exactly what you want to accomplish. Be specific and crystal clear. Break down your tasks into the smallest tasks that need to be accomplished. Be patient and steady like the captain of a ship that has to steer a vessel though tough seas. Be prepared for disappointments and don't give up when they occur. Be proud of your work and always do your very best. Keep score of what you have accomplished and never waver. Then ENJOY the results!
In closing, I want to dedicate this lesson to my son Christopher and his lovely wife Tracy. I've proudly watched them practice many daily disciplines to accomplish worthy goals, and enjoy an enriched and healthy lifestyle together!