When I was younger, I was often lazy. Too often actually. I watched netflix and read Wikipedia all day long.
And that I meant I didn’t:
- Do well in school because I was always cramming at the end to finishing an assignment or study for an exam.
- Go to the gym and take care of my body, or take the time to actually cook something healthy.
- Take care of my personal growth and dreams but just left it all to”some day”.
Now I won’t lie. I still love lazying around and not doing much. There’s always time for that. But I’ve also learned how to get things done that are important to me. And I can thank it to one simple strategy.
A very simple Japanese principle called Kaizen
This is so simple that most of us forget to adopt it. But here it goes: Kaizen is the mindfulness idea of accomplishing a task through a series of small steps.
So many of us think that to accomplish big goals we have to do something big, but actually it doesn’t work like that.
To accomplish big goals, they never happen over night. Big results come from small changes over time.
According to Kaizen.com:
“One of the most notable features of kaizen is that big results come from many small changes accumulated over time.”
The end result of thinking that big changes require big steps is that we get burnt out and overwhelmed. Kaizen is all about moving forward in an interval that shows instant, tangible results as a form of motivation.”
If you want to learn language, don’t think of you’re going to learn all these different words and phrases immediately.
Instead you set small goals and achieve them first. It could be that you’re going to learn 10 words each day. Every time you complete that task you’ve reach your goal.
By the time it gets to the end of the year, you’ve learned 3650 words.
That’s a wonderful achievement – and with just a tiny investment of time on a daily basis.
Also it works according to neuroscience too. Every time you achieve a goal, dopamine is released in our brain which inspires us to take action.
When dopamine flows into the brain’s reward pathway (the part responsible for pleasure, learning and motivation), we not only feel greater concentration but are inspired to re-experience the activity that caused the chemical release in the first place.
This is why the cultivation of small wins can propel you to bigger success, and you should focus on setting just a few small achievable goals.
So not only will work it practically, but you’ll also be hacking your happy chemicals as well 🙂