With a broken wrist held together by a titanium plate (thank you for your good wishes!), I’ve been inching through my priorities, and rediscovering the power in small and slow.
In learning anything, improvement comes through awareness, small moves and consistency. Think exercise gains, prudent investments, or typing with your left hand when you’re a righty – slow and steady brings the gains.
This contra-indicates the popular mindset of ‘go big or go home’ – which has its place – but maybe too much of a hold in our psyche’s.
That’s because – when we’re overwhelmed, we get stuck between what we know we should do (exercise every day! Read more books! Launch that new product!) – and what we actually do. Judging only the big moves as worthwhile robs us of the power of Micro.
These 4 micro distinctions, observed daily, can transform your life.
You apply them to areas of your life you want to impact. This could be in building your effectiveness at work, developing better relationships in your life, or achieving health goals.
Micro Compromise – the little trade-offs we make
These are those small easy things we do that we barely notice, but done each day diminishes effectiveness, joy, health or financial wellbeing. Examples include scrolling through social media for 1 minute instead of having an actual break, snoozing through the alarm, or eating desert every night. Small in isolation, but with a cumulative net toll.
QUESTION: What daily micro compromise can you stop doing?
Micro Sacrifice – the small cost we pay in the moment (that serves us at a future date)
It’s the opposite of compromise. Micro sacrifice is a small discomfort we often don’t mind. Examples include walking up a flight of stairs instead of taking the escalator, or increasing your savings by $50 per week. Small in isolation, but with a cumulative net benefit.
QUESTION: What daily micro sacrifice can you start taking?
Micro Investment – what you contribute to
This investment is about what and who you give your attention to. It includes being present with someone, being kind, and creating moments of connection through a smile or a comment. Micro investments add energy to you and others.
QUESTION: What daily micro investment can you start taking?
Micro Actions – small daily expressions of who you are and the impact you want to make.
These don’t take much time nor need a big splash. It could be taking 3 long, slow breaths to centre yourself before reacting, or sharing an idea at a meeting, or even keeping silent in a situation where you normally take the lead position, to allow another to be heard.
QUESTION: What daily micro action can you start taking?
Each of these are small micro choices that on their own as a one off won’t amount to much. But as a daily practice they have a cumulative effect if focused on areas that are important to you.
With sustained application, the power of micro can build the foundation for change that lasts. I’ve seen this work in teams struggling with building a leadership mindset when people feel daunted by the scale of the challenge. It doesn’t happen overnight, but it does happen.
Like the butterfly emerging from the cocoon, with micro you will look back at what you’ve achieved, and wonder how you got there.
When the gap between where you are, and where you want to be, seems too big, apply the Power of Micro.
Till next week,
My love to you