The advice I followed that kept me sane and helped me reach my goals

Why using small steps to get to your goals can help

Mental health

You, yes you. How are you doing today? That five-year-old won a DJ’ing contest, and digital nomads are ruling the world while you’re stuck at your 9 to 5 job. Well, let’s make that 9 to 9 because, work from home. It’s tough not to feel left out in today’s hustle driven, success-hungry world unless you’re a 21-year-old who has a million-dollar business or you’re discovering the cure for cancer. Self-doubt can creep in when your social media feed talks about overnight success stories and side-hustles that make tons of money. It can leave you feeling depressed. So here’s the conversation I had one fine day that could help:

*Teenage me, lying down on my bed aimlessly after an hour worth of social media scrolling* 

Dad: What’s wrong with you? 

Me: Dad, do you think I can be successful? 

Dad: Why would you say that? 

Me: I don’t know. I want to be a journalist but, we don’t even have contacts and, this other girl (shows Instagram) has 100 articles in the Times of India already! She’s a senior, of course.

Dad: So? You’re in your first year. 

Me: Still, how will I become a good journalist even in the next ten years when I don’t even have a single article in any newspaper? 

Dad: Hmmffff. I’m going to tell you something my dad told me. Don’t cross a bridge that hasn’t even come yet. Take smaller steps, plan smaller goals, and before you know it, you will be at the zenith. 

Why it worked for grandad

My grandfather made life sound REEAALLLYYY easy. He left what is now Pakistan during the Indian partition of 1947 with a 10-day old baby—evading the rioters and the scuffle of his village onto a fully-packed train. He was probably lucky to have made it alive on that journey because people killed the passengers sitting in the corners whenever a station arrived. He then took a steamer from Karachi and lived at a refugee camp in Mumbai. After that, he raised five children in a studio apartment and educated them. He passed away, leaving just enough wealth for everyone to survive. Sure he didn’t become Bill Gates but, he did pretty darn good. If he had contemplated achieving his 10-year goal, he wouldn’t have survived the next day. Smaller steps, smaller goals went a long way in helping him reach his success summit. A big bonus was that it kept him sane.

Why it helped me and maybe you too

What’s the point of a ten-year plan when you don’t know how to work for it tomorrow? Here’s how following this advice helps me: 

  1. Keeps me focused: When I have set smaller, achievable and realistic goals for myself, it keeps me focused on achieving them. 
  2. Mental satisfaction: Achieving my goals leaves me feeling mentally satisfied and makes me feel more confident about myself. 
  3. Action: The bonus here is that I have a sense of security because I’m one step closer to achieving the great life I’ve imagined by climbing smaller steps. 

So, I’d like to end this by suggesting, take smaller steps, and before you know it, you will be at the zenith.