How do we begin making the big changes we want to make in life? How do we break old behavior patterns and beliefs that hold us back from our life goals? This is a topic I've been thinking a lot about, and one day recently I realized something. All of our small behaviors, habits, every corner of our lives is connected to the larger part of our lives. We can make small, seemingly achievable changes to make big changes, and the small seemingly insignificant bad habits we carry are often signs of the very barriers that hold us back. If you're feeling powerless or out of control in your life, connect with a regular practice in which you feel a sense of mastery. It could be gardening, or knitting, or sports. If you are trying to be extraordinary in your career, you must adopt extraordinary habits in your daily life. Wake early, be intentional about how you spend your time. Be disciplined, learn about unique subjects, and do things few people are doing. If you want to be a better person, begin by picking up garbage, or smiling at those you pass on the street. Begin with small acts of kindness, until you feel kind, until you are better. If you want to command a company one day, it's going to be hard to feel truly powerful enough to do so if you engage in relationships that leave you feeling disempowered. It's all connected. If you're having trouble achieving something, look to your daily routines, habits, and relationships for clues to your barriers and as the opportunity for making the changes you want to make.
The first step is taking an honest inventory of how you spend your time, the parts of your life which you feel most proud of, and the parts you feel less proud of. Observe your day-to-day habits for the next week and make a list of areas you could improve. For example, if you stay up late on the weekends drinking or playing video games, and sleep half the morning away, it's unlikely that you will truly be efficient or disciplined in the other areas of your life. Perhaps the drinking or late night video games truly make you happy. In that case, it may be about looking at some other habit that doesn't contribute to your life or serve you seeing what you can change about it. This idea is not about being overly self-critical, it's simply about looking at our habits with objective eyes. Assessing where we can improve, and making the changes necessary.