Go Small

art of encore living Jan 12, 2024

Making progress in your pursuit of better living while you make a bigger difference in the second half of life requires making decisions and taking action.

Of course, it helps to make deliberate decisions (ones that are weighed and considered) and to take action with intention and integrity.

It also helps if you acknowledge and accept that decisions are not outcomes.1

And work on the next necessary “smallest viable step” that gets you closer to your goal of better living through making a bigger difference and living your legacy. 

Define your next smallest viable step.

“Well-being is realized by small steps.”—Zeno

It should be specific, measurable, and scheduled.

The point is to take the right (AKA “necessary and essential”) steps at the right time and in the right order.

For instance, if you decide the difference only you can make would be most effectively delivered as a coaching program. What are the essential steps?

Reasoning from first principles,2 you decide that what’s required is an offer, an audience, and a sales strategy.

You define a problem you can help others solve (or an aspiration you can help them achieve) and develop a signature approach that gets a measurable result in a specified time.

Then, you find an audience that shares your values and needs, the difference only you can make to enhance their lives.

Finally, you develop a simple sales success strategy that connects your offer with those who would benefit.

Along the way, you pay attention to obstacles and opportunities you couldn’t have predicted and adjust as needed.

Every day, you weigh your options, choose what appears to move you the farthest and fastest into the possibility you imagine, take that step, and repeat until it becomes a habit.

Then, choose the next smallest viable step.

Put another way, set a goal, establish your strategy, and define a tactic you can execute daily until your goal is reached or the deadline is met.

Rinse and repeat.

Progress in any worthwhile endeavor is made through daily deliberate steps into a more fulfilling future more often than giant leaps of faith.

Do the Work

What’s the smallest viable step you’re taking into possibility today?

Take time to journal or discuss your work, and be sure to apply your takeaways.

This article is the republished seventh of nine lessons from my handbook, “The Art of Encore Living.” See the links in the footnotes to access additional chapters3 or to purchase the complete guide for $1 on Amazon,4 or access the entire course for free.5

1 Decisions Are Not Outcomes

2 First Principles