I don't like the phrase "baby steps," because "baby" implies underdeveloped, or infantile.
And I don't like the phrase "small steps," because that implies only a little bit of energy, or movement. In reality, a "small" step can take tremendous effort, and have incredible impact.
So let's try measured steps.
I'm writing this post to encourage you, especially you over-achievers, big-dreamers, and swallow-more-than-you-can-chewers. Was that last one a stretch? Maybe. But I guarantee that if you're one of those people, you're sitting there nodding and maybe grimacing a little. Hey, if I was reading this that's what I'd be doing.
This year I wanted to hold a retreat. I was so ready to do it. I have quotes for retreat spaces. I have outlines stuffed with transformational activities and concepts. But something held me back. The measured step message has been coming through to me loud and clear from many sources, and I've finally started to listen.
I will do the retreat, maybe next year, but first...I'm concentrating on helping people one on one. Doesn't that make more sense? The big-dreamer voice in my head is shrieking: Do things before you're ready! Just do it! Do it now! Carpe Diem, already!
It's a little bit rough. So I'm learning to temper that voice with gratitude, in the moment, for how beautifully measured steps really work.
Because this is what I know: Nothing is done without that first step. Without action, there is stagnation.
And: If you're moving too fast, no amount of action and pushing will make things happen.
The real kicker: If you're moving too slowly, the Universe will kick your ass and give you ample opportunity to kick up the pace.
See, the measured steps come with less disappointment, more gratification, and a greater sense of presence. When you focus on getting your left foot in front of your right, you're aware of the leaves beneath your feet, and the life that squirms beneath the soil. When you've got your eyes set on the horizon, you can't see the rocks that threaten your toes.
Go-getters, big-dreamers, try the slow approach for a little while. Take measured steps.
If you're dragging your heels, you'll know it. And if you're meant to be doing more, you'll get a shove from behind. In all likelihood, the measured steps will bring your attention to where it matters, and you'll enjoy where you are that much more.