I just learned a new word today: KAIZEN. It's a Japanese business management term that refers to Gradual, Continuous Change and Improvement. It is all about breaking tasks down into the smallest, most manageable steps, so that the big jobs are not only easier, but more efficient, productive and enjoyable to accomplish. The Kaizen Way ultimately leads to bigger business success, but also humanizes the workplace.
What about applying the Kaizen way to our own personal life goals?
- What do you want to change?
- Sometimes change seems so overwhelming, so far from reach, so...... Realize the best change will be
- Break it down into the very smallest of steps. You'll know the step is small enough if it seems easy... Oh yeah, I can do that! If you're trying to get motivated to get back to the gymn, a baby step might be to simply take your running shoes out of the closet on "Change Day #1. Day # 2 might be finding shorts and a t-shirt. By Day #4, you might actually get to the gymn, but your goal may simply be to do a super short walk on the treadmill. Get the picture? If you forced yourself to do a full workout on Day #1, the excuses would come running, right? However, once you're actually on that treadmill, the momentum might capture you.
- Another key concept in the Kaizen way, is to make changes:
- Every day, make a step forward. Remember, the steps need only be tiny, but every increment counts. In the fitness example, that might simply include looking up the information for a class to take, doing a couple of stretches at home while watching tv, acknowledging that a rest day is an important part of your progress, or maybe just doing your laundry so you've got a clean shirt to wear next time. It doesn't mean you have to work out every day!