Eureka! I’ve been reading two books (The Power of Habit and Matthew Kelly’s soon to be released The 4 Signs of a Dynamic Catholic) at the same time. And the pieces came together in a remarkable way.
If you try in your life or your organization to make radical and sweeping changes, you will fail almost every time. Examples: diets that require you to cut out all your favorite foods at once, savings plans that insist that you shouldn’t buy anything unless it’s absolutely necessary, or giving up an addiction cold turkey. Some people succeed in these programs, but the great majority of people fail. Most of us need a gentler path.
Any suggestion of a single large change to a person’s life (or an organization) tends to be met with massive levels of fear, anxiety, and resistance. So, the only viable solution is small but consistent steps in a positive direction.
In one case a patient who was tremendously overweight was asked to stand on the treadmill for one minute each morning. That’s right. Just stand there! Another with the same problem but who was also addicted to television was simply asked to stand up and march in front of the television for one minute each hour. In both cases the patients did not become any healthier over the course of the next week, but their doctor noticed the attitude of the patient had changed.
The suggested change was so small and non-threatening that they started to think, “I can do that.” A small win created momentum for larger wins to come afterward. Change in its smallest, least threatening form, is usually the most successful.
One small step! The key to your spiritual health is prayer, yet few of us engage in that day by day. Nobody is so busy that they cannot set aside one-minute for a conversation with God each day. And then grow that to 5 minutes a day, then 10. It is just one small, seemingly insignificant, non-threatening step. But if you commit yourself to one minute a day and practice it with discipline, you will be amazed how that one-minute impacts your day. And where God will take you from there!