The modern world is full of options. Options for food, clothing, income, work, lifestyles .. options for almost everything! More options mean more decisions. More decisions mean more mental fatigue. And then there is the state of constant FOMO – Fear of Missing out! In such a constant fast-paced world, feeling overwhelmed with life is a common problem for billions of individuals ..
“Take one step at a time!! … “
Advice that most of us have heard in our lifetime at least once. If one needs to keep taking one step at a time, how can we achieve all those big things we deeply desire?
At the same time, we see many who achieve exponential results in seemingly no time … and in so many things!
So how is that possible? Is there any connection?
Let us look at a child to understand this better.
And yes .. there IS a connection!!!
In any field, even the brightest start taking tiny steps initially … just like the tiny kid who is just learning to walk, taking this first few steps stumbling all the way.
These initial attempts, steps, and the journey seem to produce nothing remarkable. .
However, there are 2 key things that combine to show the exponential growth that we see with some of these individuals:
1. The “Distance” between the steps increases –
This increase is natural because as you keep steadily putting the work, the muscles build up.
Just imagine your morning walks or exercising .. when you started, the distance between your feet or the weight you were using was less. Later it started growing and kept growing steadily.
So in the same step, you are packing more distance now .. after some initial sessions of practice.
2. The “Speed” of steps increases –
While you have started increasing the distance covered between your steps, the number of steps you are taking in given amount of time has also increased.
This means you have become more agile.
If you think of the example of your walks or your gym sessions, now you are taking the steps or doing the reps faster.
When these 2 things increase, there is a force multiplier effect and suddenly you see yourself making giant leaps.
There is one caveat here!
This does not happen with most of us. Only few of us achieve it.
Ever wondered why?
Here is our analysis:
1. Very few of us are disciplined. That one step, taken every day, is the most crucial part of this exponential journey. Most of us will invariably miss this simple and seemingly harmless thing.
2. Very few of us have the patience. In this world, where we are dopamine addicted, everything needs to give us results almost instantly. The journey to exponential however needs the patience of a few months, if not a few years in most cases.
So when you feel impatient remember the line by the billionaire Jeff Bezos: “All my overnight successes happened in 10 years!”
3. Very few of us have a very clear and measurable goal when we start to learn something new. So instead of thinking that I want to be fitter, it may be better to plan to run a marathon after 12 months. Instead of thinking that I will learn to program, it is better to plan to be a ranked programmer in one of the programming sites.
This helps us remain focused and keeps our daily efforts full of intent and purpose.
4. Very few of us have serious intent and intensity in our daily efforts. This again is connected to the point above. It happens out of a lack of clarity of your goals.
When the goal is vague or generic, our efforts are generic. Just think of the school or college you were in. Some students didn’t learn much and some completely transformed in the same 4 years of graduation! Why so? If you carefully observed, those who grew exponentially had clear goals to achieve. Their vision of future possibilities inspired them.
5. This brings us to the final point ..
Very few of us have a goal or a vision that truly inspires us. Most of our goals are derived from the society we live in and what the society values or respects ..
The biggest advantage of an inspiring vision is, it removes all the other distractions from our path.
The biggest distractions are usually not the interruptions that you may quickly imagine.
So someone who wants to learn to program may also want to learn languages. He may also want to learn marketing. This creates a diffusion of our energy. This reduces our focus. It removes the necessary intensity. Finally resulting in nothing truly significant being achieved. We end up losing the necessary confidence in ourselves.
So even if it may not necessarily be accurate, remember this one line :
1. Focus on 1 goal, your chances of success are 95%
2. Focus on 2, the probability of success goes down to 65%
3. Focus on 3, now the possibility of success in those 3 us just around 25%
If you want to overcome the feeling of overwhelm, the first thing to focus on is the Game of the Steps! …
…. With a SMART and Motivating goal!