One of the most influential books that I read in 2019 was, “One Small Step Can Change Your Life” by Robert Maurer Ph.D.
A good majority of the book talks about “Kaizen.” Kaizen is defined as using very small comfortable steps to improve a habit, a process, or product. Essentially, Kaizen encourages you to use very small moments to inspire new products and inventions.
Let’s look a bit deeper at what Kaizen is and how it can help you reach your goals.
After reading Dr. Maurer’s book, I made Kaizen my word of the year for 2020 to help guide my actions and goals for the year. That proved to be a life saver in our current situation and the modern day to help me get and stay motivated.
In modern life, information you read in the morning is outdated by 5 o’clock. As such, all we can focus on is one small step or change at a time because everything is moving so quickly.
This principle can be applied with your work teams to tackle projects, thoughts, and/or habits that you want to change during these challenging times but seem insurmountable. By breaking things down into smaller and more manageable steps, it makes even the toughest of tasks or projects seem approachable & doable.
An Example of Kaizen in Action
Let’s look at an example. In the book, Dr. Maurer described a lady who wanted to exercise regularly, but felt she was too busy to do the recommended 30 minutes a day, 4-5 times a week.
The solution according to Kaizen? Take small actions.
Dr. Maurer had her stand on her treadmill (without it running) while she was drinking her coffee and reading the newspaper. She did this for a month.
For the next month, she walked on the treadmill for one minute after she finished her coffee. That’s it… one minute.
Now is that going to help her get into shape? No, of course not, but it helps to calm the fear and helps to build new habits.
The woman then continued to add 1 minute of walking each week until she was jogging one mile a day.
There are great examples like this throughout the book. I highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in building some new habits or breaking some old destructive patterns including negative thinking and self-doubt.
Kaizen Makes It Impossible to Fail
By starting with small steps such as just standing next to the treadmill or walking for mere minutes, it helps make it way less likely that you’ll fail. If you tried to make your first step “jog 1 mile per day”, the chances that you fail are so much greater.
The KEY is to start so small that it is impossible to fail.
By using the principles in this book, I’ve gained a clearer picture of how I am going to accomplish my goals. By taking ridiculously small actions, thoughts, or steps, it also makes the process much easier and more enjoyable.
Remember, not every success comes as a “home run.” In fact most overnight sensations were actually years in the making!
Need More Support?
Hopefully Kaizen will work for you as it’s worked for me and a huge number of my patients. At MOSS Rehabilitation Center, we understand that it’s all about the process that will eventually get you the success you want.
We’re here for you during these interesting times. So, if there is something on your mind or you just want some interaction with the “outside world,” don’t hesitate to contact us!