Author: Catherine Pulsifer, © 2017
If everyone would only take just a little action, imagine what a difference it would make in your life or in the world around you. To take action isn’t just what other people need to do but more about how you take action.
An Example of Taking Action
Take recycling, for example. It is successful because a lot of people are each doing a little. If we all took the position that what we could do would be too little, we wouldn’t be experiencing the progress we are today. Each tin can or pop can or vegetable can you rinse and put into the proper recycling bin goes back for break down and reuse. Each tin can that you take recycling action with adds to another person’s actions and then another and then another and so on.
Can you visualize how many cans a small town of four thousand people throws out each day or each week? What if all those cans were piled up onto the town square after just one month? If you can picture this scene than you can picture how many cans would go to the local dump.
Taking Little Action Steps
Similarly, when you first begin a project, you may only have enough time to do a little. Over time, however, what may first appear to be small efforts will multiply and end up being significant!
The fallacy that a lot of people live with is that a little action means nothing. In these people’s minds, action means that the entire project must be done all at once or there is no point in doing only a little bit when they have time. However, think of your project in a new way and you’ll be able to complete your project a lot faster than you may at first think.
A project is simply a description of something that will be accomplished when it is finished. In this way of thinking, a project becomes a series of steps that logically lead to the next step and then the next and so forth. Each step requires a specific action to be taken. When each action step is complete, the next step can be initiated.
A simplistic example is to picture the building of a model ship or airplane. Each model kit you purchase has a large number of parts. When you first look at the number of parts that need to be assembled it can seem a daunting task. The first question, I’m sure you’ll be asking is, how do all of these parts fit together to make a finished model?
The good news is that the model comes with a full list of instructions where these instructions are divided into bite size steps. The entire process from start to finish is undertaken by taking small action steps with each step followed by another until you have a completed model.
If you think of any project you are working on in the same way as you take action steps to complete a model, you have just demonstrated to yourself how important it is to take a little action at a time and where all of these small action steps lead to the end of the project.
Looking At Inventors and Scientists
Now, let’s take a peek at the process used by various inventors and scientists. If inventors and scientists just gave up because they didn’t have enough time, or didn’t have all the answers just imagine all the everyday conveniences or advances in medicine we would not have today.
A scientist or an inventor each have to utilize the process of taking one action step after the other in a series that leads them either to a beneficial result or leads them to conclude that they need to take a different and new approach. In either case, whether a beneficial outcome or not, scientists and inventors all take individual and small action steps over time. But, what these people know is that with each effort, even if small, it leads further and further towards their intended end result or results.
Action Wisdom To Keep In Mind
Keep in mind the inspirational quote of Edmund Burke the next time you think you can only do a little.“Nobody makes a greater mistake than he who does nothing because he could only do a little.”
There is no doubt that the advances throughout history did not take place with one massive action. Each particular advance started with a thought or a dream. From this mind initiated beginning came the desire to set in motion a series of actions that would advance whatever that dream or thought was.
If you take the example of the greatest writers in the world you will understand instantly that words on a page do not appear in complete sentences or paragraphs. Each word expressed, however, is one small action step leading to other words that lead to a sentence. A group of sentences centered on the same thought form a paragraph, and then to chapters and then to a complete manuscript. And, along the way in the art of writing comes many revisions and additions to the original thought. Each aspect of writing has within itself a series of actions steps that must be completed.
And, remember the wisdom said by David DeNotaris: “I ask people if an elephant has ever bitten them. Most of the time people say no. But everyone has been bitten by a mosquito. It’s the little things that get us.”
There have been many times in my life when I only had a little time to work on my goals. When I started to write my first book was one of those times. Here is an example taken from my own experience.
I worked full time at a very demanding and time consuming job. At the same time, I had two children to raise with all the normal issues and responsibilities that go along with child rearing. The long and the short of it was that there were not enough hours in a day. The question for me was whether to start to write a book knowing that I didn’t have the time to devote to writing or would I leave my intentions to write for a time when I was devoid of the demands of a career and a young family?
However, my desire to write my first book was a burning desire. I wanted to put on paper what I had learned and experienced over several years of my life. It was a book that told my story of how I utilized inspirational and motivational quotes to help set me on the right course among many issues and concerns of life. So, what did I do?
Instead of assuming that a little action taken wasn’t going to get the job of writing a book finished, I adopted the principle of taking little action steps over and over again. To put this principle into motion, I decided that each morning I would get up an hour before the children and work for one hour on my book. For those of you who have written a book you know that one-hour to work is not a lot of time. But doing this every day, week after week, I saw the book taking shape.
Did the book write itself? Of course not. Did the book automatically end up the way I wanted to by only writing it once? Not at all. The first draft of my first book took months to complete but with each hour devoted to writing, I finally finished the first draft. Thereafter, the book went through four revisions in order for it to finally be in the form and style that I wanted.
If I had said I only have time to do a little and therefore I won’t do it at all, my book would not be published today.
Personal action is your pathway to success even if taking action is a little bit at a time!
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