Small steps are still progress

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This image by Hayley Murray had to illustrate this particular entry. It called my attention from the very moment I found it, earlier today, while browsing Unsplash for a completely different purpose.

“Small steps are still progress” is quite a meaningful sentence to me. It instantly made me think of Kaizen, a Japanese continuous improvement philosophy that teaches us how to get better at something by establishing a goal and breaking the needed actions in gradual and incremental steps. So if one wants to walk 10km a day, but is not used to doing so, one first walks 100m a day until properly used to doing so, before defying longer distances. And if 100m is too much, then start with 50m. 25m. Getting used first, by repeating it in an everyday routine, is exactly taking small steps and making progress towards the final goal.

As I’ve recently come to work in a business area completely new to me, remembering small steps are still progress is key. I’ve met lots of very nice professionals who excel at what they do, things that I also need — and want to properly learn how — to do. But the difference between them and me is that they’ve got years of experience in those activities. So it will take time for me to run the same 10 daily kilometers they do — and that’s ok, no matter how many times my anxious mind wants to tell me or convince me of the opposite. I need to keep in mind that for now, running my 100m is enough, even though it might seem too little. Small steps are still progress, and slowly progressing will pay off in the long run.

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