We are moving from dreaming into action. Don’t get carried away.
Ok. Let’s check in. Third week of January… How you doing?
How are you tracking with your New Year’s resolutions? And even if you didn’t make any resolutions exactly, chances are you still used the break to do a bit of a stock-take of your life – to have a bit of a think about what is working and what is not.
It’s a reflective time of year.
And if you’re like most people, you were probably dreaming big. This is the year you’re going to get serious about the ballerina body, the mining magnate portfolio, the Royal Wedding romance.
“Oh William, is that where you’ve been hiding the crown jewels?”
And that’s great. You should totally do that. You should dream deep into what you want. You should let your imagination serve you up with a three-course meal of satisfied desire, and you should savour every imagined mouthful.
The more you connect with the felt experiences of what it is you are hunting, the more fire you get in your belly, and the more into alignment with those desires you become.
So in the first two weeks of January, that’s a fantastic thing to be doing. Bravo.
But come the third week of January… well, now it’s time for the rubber to hit the road.
Now is the time to start gearing those dreams into action. Most importantly, now is the time to cement the habits that will carry you on autopilot through the rest of the year.
And in this phase, we turn from the big and the sensational, and give our attention to the small and the practical.
So sure, maybe you want the ballerina body. Why not? I wouldn’t mind that, myself. Who wouldn’t?
But if you’ve spent the last twenty years trapped behind an office desk eating tim-tams, that ballerina body probably isn’t available to you just now.
And if you just go an enrol yourself in a elite ballerina training program in Russia, you’re setting yourself up for crushing disappointment and another five years of tim-tams.
It is great to dream big – with the fullness of your heart. But when it times got to put those dreams into action, you have to move slowly and steadily from where you honestly are.
Dream big, step small.
And in many ways, this should come easily.
Sure, sometimes you’ve got to pull off a drastic manoeuvrer. Like quitting cigarettes or something. As far as I can tell, that’s not something you can gradually ween yourself off… It’s one of those cases where a drastic cold-turkey strategy does seem to work best.
But when you’re pulling off such a radical manoeuvre, you’ve really got to be giving it all of your life-focus. I mean, you can’t be quitting cigarettes, and getting up an hour earlier, and exercising more, and getting off the sugar etc. etc.
There’s only so much you can manage. There’s only so much any of us can manage.
So now is the time for action, but it’s a time for practical action. It’s not time for enrolling in Ballerina school. It’s time for committing to walking to the shops instead of driving.
And it’s a time for remembering that even small shifts in trajectory, if held, can amount to massive changes in direction over the longer run.
So slow it down. Keep that fire in your belly, but move with steady grace into the action phase of the year.
And big things will happen in time.