Have you ever felt like life is a never-ending cycle of sameness? Doing the same thing every day, feeling like you’re stuck on a hamster wheel? I have. It’s easy to fall into this pattern, especially with bills to pay and responsibilities to fulfill.
What if it were possible to make small tweaks to your life to create a ripple effect of positive changes?
When I was struggling with whether to close my studio or not, I hit some depression. Keeping it open felt like it was something I had to do because I had commitments. I had a lease, I had people who relied on me, and our current customers were dedicated to us. On the other hand, we’d opened a brand new location into Covid and then lost half our team. The remaining team was burnt out and overworked, running on fumes and we weren’t getting enough people in the door to hire more. It was a catch-22, downward spiral.
I found myself lacking motivation and sleeping later than I used to sleep. I justified it by saying that I was exhausted and had a lot going on, which was all true. But I knew I couldn’t continue down this path, I needed to make a change.
Instead of forcing a big decision, or pushing myself into a major change, I decided to make a few small tweaks.
Early to Rise
The first thing I decided to do was to wake up earlier by just one minute each day for about a month.
Yes, just one minute.
It was all I could do at the time, but it was a gentle and sweet way to shift my energy and move in a new direction. And it worked. I started to feel better about myself, and I was moving in the direction that I wanted to go. It was a small change, and it rippled out to make a bigger impact. It led to other small changes and finally to major shifts.
Have you ever seen the movie Groundhog Day with Bill Murray? My situation reminded me of that – where he repeats the same day over and over again. He goes through all these stages – denial, frustration, avarice, manipulation, and then finally, he starts to shift his attitude. This is where everything changes for him. I needed some help shifting my attitude, so I made that first little tweak to my morning routine.
In the movie, Bill’s character changes over time and finally sees opportunity, joy and possibility his predictable daily routine offers. This is where it all changes for him and we get to see him become a person who makes each day an extraordinary day instead of someone straining in misery to escape.
Who doesn’t want to create an extraordinary day – every day?
The lessons in Groundhog Day abound! It’s easy to see them in the microcosm of the movie, and it can be harder to apply those lessons to our lives. It all begins with an inner choice, and a bit of willpower. The good news, it doesn’t have to be a dramatic overnight turn of events. It can be one small tweak today, and then another small tweak next week – one decision at a time. Just like how I woke up 1 minute earlier each day over a month’s time period.
So I wonder where, in your life, are you being called to make a small change? What could the impacts of that tweak ultimately be?
As you consider that, remember that making small tweaks to your life is a journey, not a destination. It takes time, presence, and practice. And, every small change that you make will have a ripple effect on the rest of your life.
Like a domino effect.
One small tweak can lead to another, and before you know it, your life has completely transformed.
What is one thing that you can do today that would be gentle and sweet with yourself, that would still allow you to move in a direction so that you are no longer where you are?
Start with one small tweak and see where it takes you. The possibilities are endless.