Change Management

Photo for Business Insights blog-Take This Tiny Step First to Success

Take This Tiny Step First to Success

Do you dream of launching your own business? Perhaps you have an amazing idea, but something is holding you back? Maybe you want to move to another city or country, and start all over?

Taking the first step is always the hardest part. It’s not uncommon to see people never do what they have in mind just because they’re too scared to get started.

New experiences come with a dose of fear. You must embrace the unknown and take risks. Not everyone is willing to let go and take on these challenges.

Believe it or not, you can bring your ideas to life without changing everything at once. It’s that first step that can move you in the right direction. Small things, such as building a new habit, can go a long way toward your success.

 

Why Taking the First Step Is the Hardest

No matter what you’re trying to achieve, taking the first step can be mind-wreaking. You might think:

  • What if I fail?
  • How will I make money?
  • What will people think?
  • What if I’m no good?
  • What if it’s not the right time to do it?
  • Am I ready for this?

The truth is that no one can guarantee that you’ll succeed. But, you’ll never know how it’s going to turn out unless you try. Do you want to spend the rest of your life wondering What if?

That first step is always the hardest because it requires you to embrace the unknown and face your fears. It’s also the most important step – without it, nothing will change.

 

Feeling Scared?  Take a Half Step to Change Your Life

Most times, it’s the small things that have the biggest impact on our lives. You don’t have to change everything from one day to the next. If you’re scared of the unknown, do one little, minuscule thing to get started.

It can be contacting real estate agents to find a flat in your dream city, making a phone call to find out what it takes to start a business, or eating one healthy meal rather than junk food. Choose one little habit and stick to it. Celebrate this first step and feel proud of it.

Later, take another step and then another, and so on. Stop waiting for the perfect moment to get started. Stop overanalyzing and just go for it! The best time to start is now.  So, take your first step to success.

Photo for Business Insights blog-Thinking Small to Go Big

Thinking Small to Go Big

Did you know that only eight percent of people reach their goals? That’s right! The other 92 percent fail within weeks or months. According to researchers, what differentiates the two comes down to one simple thing: setting specific and challenging goals.

However, this doesn’t mean you should try to do everything at once. In fact, trying to reach the stars is often a recipe for failure. If you want to go big, you have to think small. Break big goals into smaller goals and start from there.

What’s Wrong with “Thinking Big?”

We keep hearing that we can accomplish anything we want, whether it’s saving the world or becoming an astronaut. Unfortunately, that’s unlikely to happen. Sure, you could do it, but it will take years of hard work. For this reason, it’s so important to take small steps toward your goals.

The truth is, what you need to do is to think big in detail. It’s necessary to have detailed information, plans, knowledge, and skills for your big goals to become a reality. That won’t happen overnight.

A big idea doesn’t guarantee success. Anyone can have ideas, but only a few can bring them to life. When thinking big, it’s easier to miss the small details and make costly mistakes. If you fail, you’ll feel disappointed and have a hard time starting all over.

For example, many people dream of building a million-dollar business. However, they haven’t yet learned how to make even $1. To succeed, think big in increments. Focus on making your first dollar, then your first $100, then $1,000, and so on.

Change Your Habits to Change Your Life

Whether you want to become the next Steve Jobs, launch a successful project, or climb up the career ladder, you need to start with baby steps. Swap any habits that hold you back for habits that move you forward.

Let’s say you always find excuses to skip your workout. By doing that you’ll never manage to lose those extra pounds and get in shape.

Commit yourself to hit the gym at least three times a week. Take it seriously just like you do with your job or family time. A month later, schedule four workouts a week.

In the meantime, make small changes to your diet. Do one thing at a time. For instance, you could ditch the sugar during week one, cut back on junk food the second week, cook your meals from fresh ingredients the third week, and so on.

Think small to go big, and the results will follow!

Photo for Business Insights blog-8 Small Changes to Be a Happier Person

8 Small Changes to Be a Happier Person

Happiness is both art and science. According to researchers, healthy people are 20 percent happier than average. An annual salary of $75,000 is what it takes to put a smile on the average person’s face. Furthermore, people with 10 or more friends are the happiest.

We don’t see that you should switch careers or socialize like crazy to be happy. However, there are a few – 8 small changes you can make for a better life. Let’s get into the 8 small changes to be a happier person:

Call Your Friends More Often

It’s easier to stay in contact with your friend than make new ones. Try to stay in touch or reconnect with old school mates or colleagues. That will boost your satisfaction and make you feel more accomplished.

Get More Exercise

Regular exercise makes us happier. That’s a fact. Whether it’s cycling, weight training, or swimming, exercise increases the feel-good chemicals in your brain and keeps stress at bay.

Learn to Say No

If you want to be happy, don’t over-commit. Every time you say Yes to something, you’re saying No to something else. Be realistic about what you can and cannot do and squeeze more “me” time into your schedule.

Wake Up Earlier

The world’s most successful people are known for their crazy wakeup hours. Some start the day as early as 3:30 am.

Waking up earlier will not only boost your productivity but also allow you get more done. That will give you satisfaction and relieve everyday stress.

Be Generous

A little bit of generosity can go a long way toward your happiness. When you do a good deed, even if it’s something as little as buying a coffee for a friend, it changes the way you see yourself and the way people interact with you.

Picture It

Make a habit out of imaging your life the way you want it to be. This technique, which is called “self-guided positive imagery,” will boost your happiness and feelings of well-being.

Use Happy Words

Studies have found that using just three positive phrases per day can increase happiness, satisfaction, and gratitude. Replace negative words and phrases with positive ones – you will feel better instantly!

Declutter

Take the time to declutter your home and throw away what you no longer need or use. Clutter increases stress restricts your ability to focus and affects your productivity.

As you see, it doesn’t take too much to be happy. Make these small changes today – your future self will thank you.

Photo for Business Insights blog-How One Tiny Thing Can Change Your Day and Your Life

How One Tiny Thing Can Change Your Day and Your Life

The concept of kaizen teaches us that making small, tiny changes to our routine and lifestyle can add up to overwhelming differences in your overall productivity, happiness, and performance.

An example of this might be to write a page of a novel every day. It doesn’t seem like a lot, but if you consider that an average novel might have 300 pages… well then you could easily write the whole thing in a year as a result!

Or what if you were to save just $10 a day? Again, it seems perfectly doable. But by the end of the year you’ll have putt away $3,600! Enough for an impressive holiday.

But kaizen is also about the way in which a single small deviation can have huge repercussions when it is amplified by time. What do we mean by that?

Well, consider throwing a ball to a target. When we do this, our brains perform incredibly complex math first. When you throw that ball, you need to get the angle and the force precisely right. If your angle is 5 degrees off, then that might not seem like a lot, but as the ball travels it will deviate from the intended course more and more.

The further it goes, the bigger the gap becomes.

Life is like this. You might be do something only very slightly differently every day, but over time that will add up to a greater and greater effect. This is particularly true in scenarios where there is a cumulative effect.

But it gets even simpler than that. When we consider the “butterfly effect,” we realize that even the smallest thing can add up to having huge repercussions.

Take for example shaving in the morning. You might decide one morning not to shave – because you’re in a hurry – or you might decide that you are going to.

Small difference, right? But what if on that day, you happen bump into someone in the street, an old colleague perhaps? You get to chatting and they think you look good – like you have your act together. They ask you some questions, and as a result, end up offering you to come and interview for a new job.

What if you hadn’t shaved? What if you were looking tired and unshaven? Might they not have given you that opportunity?

It’s very possible. And while this isn’t exactly what we mean by kaizen, it does highlight one very important truth: tiny differences add up to huge results. So, focus on the minutiae!

Photo for Business Insights blog-When It Comes to Business, Change Really Is the Only Reality

When It Comes to Business, Change Really Is the Only Reality

What’s the one thing that you, as a businessperson, can count on? What’s that one thing that you can be certain will happen? What is the one sure bet that you need to take account of when you make your plans? If you said change, then you are right. When it comes to business, change really is the only reality.

Every business owner can hit a sweet spot. They’ve dialed into their audience. Their marketing is right on the money. Sales are coming in and are growing. Their customers are satisfied with the product or service they are producing. The only problem seems to be figuring out how to keep up the demand for what they make or do.

It’s an intoxicating feeling when you’re in this kind of a situation. Everything is on autopilot and working the way it should. There are no apparent problems anywhere in the entire production process. It’s very easy in this situation to take a deep breath and relax. It’s also very easy to start considering yourself to be bulletproof. After all, look at the success you’ve achieved. You obviously know how to do things in the right way.

However, giving in to this sense of complacence is a terrible mistake. You see, now of your greatest success, the market is changing and morphing into something different. You were lucky enough to hit the crest of a trend in the market, the crest of a wave if you will. However, no wave is ever static, and neither is any trend in the market. The wave that you’re currently riding will eventually break and be followed by another and another and another. This means that the secret of success is not in the achieving, it’s in the maintenance.

A smart entrepreneur understands this fact and avoids complacence like the plague. They understand that all glory is fleeting. They know that the only way to stay on top of the game is to develop the ability to adapt to the changes that the marketplace always brings.

In this sense, rigidity in any aspect of business is fatal. When the wind begins to blow from a different quarter, you must be ready to adjust your course to reflect that change. If you don’t, you’ll soon find yourself dead in the water. You will quickly be overtaken by your more prepared competitors. In business, you must either adapt or die.

Photo for Business Insights blog-Baby steps… Baby steps… 14 Days of Small Changes

Baby steps… Baby steps… 14 Days of Small Changes Produce Big Results

If you watched the 1991 movie What About Bob? you might remember Bill Murray mincing his way through the movie muttering, “Baby steps, baby steps.” Baby steps are the key to making a lasting difference. Dramatic changes are also traumatic changes, and soon enough, we all fall back into the same rutted tracks we made before.

The way to change your life isn’t in some grand gesture. Chances are you’ve already found that out. The way to make a lasting change is with a whole lot of small steps. Believe it or not, lasting change can come in as little as two weeks and doesn’t require 30 days as you’ve probably heard before.

The first thing you need to realize is that there isn’t s a ‘set in stone’ formula to a new you. There are as many ways to achieve results as there are people in the world. What follows here is a method that’s worked for many, and only takes two weeks of solid commitment from you.

Let’s get started with two weeks’ worth of daily activities. Remember, these need to be repeated each day until a bolder and happier you is automatic. Change what fits you best. Remember, the biggest part of becoming who you truly are is by not being who someone else says you are. Do the things that make you feel good about yourself. You should always be happy with who you’re striving to be.

Here is that springboard to get you started…

Day 1: Forgive yourself for everything that’s happened before this. You’ve tried, you’ve messed up. Sometimes you succeeded. However, it worked out for you, there’s nothing you can do about the past. Start fresh, permit yourself to not dwell on what’s come before.

Day 2: Find out what you want and vocally tell yourself that you’re going to get it. The movies constantly portray people giving themselves pep talks in the mirror. Usually, we’re supposed to laugh at that particular scene, but the image re-occurs. Why? The reason is that it’s an effective strategy. Be bold and be specific. Tell yourself, “I HAVE THIS!”

Day 3: There is an adage among the military that the only wrong decision is not to make one. Now is not the time to vacillate and be unsure of your goal – reach it. Today is your day to make clear, concise decisions. What is the one small positive decision or change that you can make today to reach your goal? Today you’re doing to decide to do it – and then follow through.

Day 4: You have baggage, everyone does. Some of it is emotional, and some of it is from the past. There’s another type that you may not have considered and that’s clutter. You’re starting fresh and have chosen not to be the person you were five days ago. So, get rid of anything you haven’t even touched in a year. You don’t need it. That also goes for anything you have around the house that makes you feel bad. Don’t keep those mementos of past relationships that only bring you pain when you look at them. It’s time to clear them out too!

Day 5: Track your day. Find out how much time was spent doing what. If there are 4 hours each day in front of the TV, that might be a place to start changing, depending on the goals you have in mind. But again – DO NOT change who you are because others insist that you must. Living your life by other’s standards will crush you every time. Make the changes that benefit you personally.

Day 6: Laugh. You may have to search out something to laugh at, but make sure you do. Make a plan to laugh at least once a day. Make faces at your dog, do something silly, plan and book your next vacation, spend time making a child laugh. Laughter will always come back to you in a good way.

Day 7: Let it go. Easier said than done, but keep in mind that when you are insulted or belittled or treated in a way that makes your blood boil for a little payback, it’s already happened. Remember a time when you were hurtful and petty and the way it tore you up inside. The person harming you now is not only feeling that emotion but has become so jaded and tortured by their hate that they may never recover. Let it go. Consciously tell yourself that this is over.

Day 8: Get a baseline. After the first week, you’re beginning to make your mind more flexible, but remember that your physical health is just as important in making a new you. Get a physical, get blood work done, figure out where you are. Maybe your former attitude was partly due to hypoglycemia or something else entirely. Find out.

Day 9: You’re wrong. We all are from time to time. It’s okay. Let yourself off the hook for things you’ve messed up. Let yourself know that you’re human, and humans make mistakes, sometimes a lot of mistakes. Don’t let it stop you. Keep moving forward and clean up after yourself, when needed. If you’ve wronged someone else, this might be a good day to apologize.

Day 10: You don’t want to hear this. No one does, but if you follow it anyway, you’ll make enormous inroads to changing your life for the better. Eat healthily. It’s a cliché, eat healthily, diet, blah, blah, but it works. Your body cannot function on foods that it can’t use, and an unhealthy body will weigh down your life. There are delicious, healthy options for every kind of food craving. Now’s the time to explore them!

Day 11: You saw this one coming. What goes along with eating correctly? Exercise. Before you roll your eyes, keep in mind that no one said you had to indulge in a three-hour muscle marathon at the gym. Go for a walk, play with the dog or throw a ball with the kids. Get up, get out and move. You will feel much better, and your dog will think you’re a god.

Day 12: Read. Exercise builds the body, and reading builds the mind. In this age, we’re often buried alive in work and school and children. Reading seems a luxury from long ago, doesn’t it? Think how to get in a little reading time. For example, think about that everyday commute. What do you listen to when stuck in traffic waiting for the light to change? Audiobooks are still books.

Day 13: Reach out. There are others out there also wanting to change your life. If your goal is to lose weight, I guarantee there are tens of thousands of people that share that goal. If you are looking to increase your wealth, there are groups for that too. Find your tribe, share your journey and listen to theirs. Other people will have ideas that never occurred to you. Possibly you will inspire someone else.

Day 14: You got this far, now take it to the deep end. By now, you’re going to feel very different than before you began the journey. And so you should, you’re a different person already, someone who can laugh, who shrugs off the pettiness of the day and someone who can boldly reach for your goal.

Now go for the brass ring. Today I want you to face one fear. Are you afraid to fly? Book a short flight and return trip. Afraid of public speaking? Try something like Toastmasters or another group that deals with public speaking. Afraid of meeting someone new? Go out and socialize.

By this time, you’re probably feeling a little different. And what’s more, others will start to see you as a somebody new. You will be approached differently and met differently. You are becoming a bold, self-confident person. Other self-assured people will gravitate towards you.

As a side note, changes don’t happen overnight and people you have known for a while will carry some baggage with your name on it. If you were a downer before, or maybe just a wilting flower, you’re going to be perceived as that way for a while. Don’t fall into the trap of being who someone else decides you should be.

That doesn’t mean to say you have to wear a mask. Believe it or not, this is you. And you did it all with simple baby steps, by doing a little each day, always remembering to allow yourself the chance to shine. Those doubters will come around eventually and see the new you. In the meantime, make some new acquaintances, people who only know this version of you. They will keep you buoyed long enough for your old friends to catch up.

And look closely at the people in your life. Are they there for you? Do they uplift you and tell you that you’re doing well, or do they denigrate and deride you? There is no room for people who keep you down, and there’s no reason for it either. De-cluttering needs to happen sometimes in a relationship too. So, don’t surround yourself with people that think you can’t make it. That includes you! Don’t let yourself be the person that holds you back. The chance to be bold comes every day. The good news is, if you miss one, another will come along soon enough. Try again tomorrow.

Remember to permit yourself to be imperfect. Take that with the ability to laugh at yourself, and you will have created a fresh and exciting new you.

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