A Little Misty: On Small Changes and Big Results

I can say with confidence that 2012 has been a year of many, many small changes that have resulted in what appears, on the surface, as great change, at least from my perspective.

It goes without saying that many of those moments have made me misty eyed, whether I’m overcome with the great sadness of leaving someone or something or some place; sentiment at the connection or awareness I feel; or excitement and joy at what opportunities, doors and experiences open for me.
These changes haven’t always been easy, without pain or discomfort, or fun. Cutting back on alcohol, at one point entirely and just cutting back on consumption, for example, was a REALLY hard hurdle for me this year, and I still struggle with it. But most of these subtle changes aren’t new; they’re things that have gnawed at me and my psyche for years, either consciously or subconsciously. Something happened, some floodgate opened, where even the ways I THINK about and TALK about and FACE these changes… have been altered. I have altered the way I approach change.
I had a conversation with my boss today about the history of the growing company I recently joined. Amid our conversation about strategic and intentional, thoughtful planning and growth, he brought up a message I heard early on (I think even during the interview process) passed down from the CEO…

Try to grow 1 percent every day.
This, of course, turned into its own misty-eyed moment.Part of the reason I feel like I fit in so well in this new role is that I started applying that to my daily life this year. I think it started with trying to do a headstand in yoga; at some point, I started practicing in every class against the wall. Then I started practicing in my office on the wall. Then I started practicing multiple times a day in my office and at home, each headstand getting incrementally, almost invisible amounts, better, but better nonetheless. Then I started to work on not touching the wall with my feet, and I slowly would move my base further and further away from the wall.
You can predict, without further description, the progression of my headstand practice. I took the same steps with handstands, biking home up Forest Avenue (which I still don’t do everyday. Heh heh), waking up earlier, drinking more water, reducing my caffeine consumption… I certainly slip up (see this afternoon’s cappuccino on Instagram!) or indulge, but these “1 percent” improvements allowed me to act, change and grow in ways that, if you asked me nearly four years ago, I couldn’t have even dreamed of.
While I can’t help someone rip into a headstand in 5 minutes (and certainly don’t suggest doing it! It can cause a lot of physical damage!!), I can certainly tell them about my own progression and what he or she can do, every day! in little, incremental steps! to get used to the sensation of being upside down and moving legs over your head.
Because going upside down, just like trying to get 1 percent better every day, can TOTALLY, very subtly and in ways that are rarely perceivable to you, change your perspective, and from what I perceive, can change your life.

One thought on “A Little Misty: On Small Changes and Big Results

  1. From the Salon Chair: On Inner and Outer Beauty and Routine « LadyEllJay

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