This post was most recently updated on August 1st, 2016
People don’t always like to hear this, but it’s the little things that big dreams are made of.
They don’t like to hear it because they often don’t really want to do those little things.
Now, this may seem strange to hear, because you’d think that people would be happy to have little tasks to tend to, rather than try to undertake huge projects.
But it’s not usually true.
If you have a Big Project to do, it’s easy to find reasons to put it off.
Do any of these sound familiar to you?
- I can’t start it today, or tomorrow, or this week, because…
- I have to wait until I can really sit down and figure out how to proceed.
- I need at least 3 or 4 days to work on this intensely, just to get it started.
- Maybe I’ll wait for my 2 week vacation time.
- I need to start taking some notes, doing some basic research before I can tackle this.
- I don’t really know how to do such a big thing.
- I’d better buy a few courses or books about this so I can start understanding what I’ve got to do.
- This is my Big Project. It’s got to be absolutely perfect.
- I need to really get my act together before I can start something like this.
You see, it’s easy to justify putting off the Big Project… the Big Dream.
It’s much easier thinking about it, mulling it over, considering it, preparing for it, reading some books about it, watching how other people are doing it, etc.
It’s much easier because none of these things require a real, focused effort to get things done.
When Is The Time “Right” To Start Tackling Your Big Project?
I’ve actually got a rather Big Project I working on right now.
The problem is, I’ve been in and out of different illnesses for the last couple of months.
First one thing, then another.
It gave me a perfect excuse for putting off my Big Project.
But I didn’t put it off.
I started working on it.
Not with all the gusto I’d have liked to invest in it, but I dug in and started making some progress.
No, I couldn’t put in the 8 to 10 hour work days I’d like to have.
In fact, some days I really couldn’t do anything at all.
But when I did muster some energy, I’d work a half an hour… maybe an hour, sometimes two.
That wasn’t a big deal in terms of time, but it was very big deal in terms of knowing that I was engaged in getting this thing done.
No matter what.
Now, here’s the thing you really need to understand.
I started this Big Project when I was pretty sick, and had hardly energy to devote to it.
Avoid Taking On The “Big Project” or Trying To Fulfill Your “Big Dreams”
How was I able to start on something so big, when I was feeling pretty miserable?
The answer is that I didn’t tackle “The Big Project.”
I couldn’t even begin to think like that.
What I did tend to, though, were many of the little things that I was actually able to do.
These were the little things that I knew had to get done in order for this Big Project to get completed.
It’s kind of like this.
Suppose you’ve committed to going on a hundred mile hike, and you’ve never done anything like that before… how do you get started?
You think of lots of reasons to put it off, like waiting for better weather, until you’re more rested, or whatever.
You could put it off forever, right?
Or, you could just start off one day with the first mile.
Now maybe you find this to be just intolerable.
But you’ve committed to it, so you’ve got to persevere.
You stop for lunch.
Then you walk another mile to a hotel, take a hot shower and just hang out there for a day or two.
Then you might go another 3 miles, etc.
I mean, it’s not the best way to do it.
Other folks will finish their 100 miles long before you do.
But if you really know that 100 mile trek is something you need to do, you could start putting little pieces of it together until you’ve actually done it.
All 100 miles of it!
And at the end of the day, your hike took you the same 100 miles that it did all the other people who may have been a lot better equipped for it than you were.
When Is The Right Time To Start Your Big Project?
The time is never “right” so don’t even wait for it to be.
But you can start doing the little things that will contribute to it’s completion right now… today… this very minute, in fact.
That makes “today” the right time to start your big project.
I’ll tell you a short story of something that actually happened to me.
I had a huge banquet to put together for 40 people who were coming to my house for an event.
How do I put together this huge banquet?
I’d never done anything like this before, so I really didn’t know how to get this Big Project done.
I could have just keep putting it off until I ran out of time, and people would be walking through my front door and I’d have nothing prepared.
Instead, I just started chopping some garlic for a while.
I wasn’t exactly sure why. I figured everything tastes
better with garlic, so I’d probably need some.
A bit later, I made up some some veggies dishes and put them in the fridge.
The next day I made a casserole and froze it.
By the time I got to the “big day” I had all the pieces set up.
I only had to put them together, set the table and wait for the bell to ring.
How Long Are You Willing To Put Off Your Big Dreams?
Big Dreams are vague.
They’re not well defined, and you probably don’t have much of an idea of how to go about making them happen, right?
Big Dreams are typically made up of a bunch of Big Projects that will bring your dreams to fruition.
But you have to get to work on the first Big Project.
- You can put it off.
- You can wait for “the right time.”
- You can watch and see how others are doing it.
- You can come up with a million reasons to put it off…
… because let’s face it.
Nobody wants to start some big, scary undertaking, especially when they hardly even know what it will entail.
Or, you can just decide that today, you’ll do one little thing that will contribute in even the tiniest way to eventually accomplishing your Big Project.
You can simply roll up your sleeves, dig in, and put in a full hour of productive time to complete one specific task.
The next day you can spend another hour and complete another tiny little task.
If you did this for a month, you’d have put at least 30 hours into completing that Big Project.
Now, honestly, if you didn’t do all those little things for a month, you’d still be nowhere.
Chances are, you’d have decided the project was just too big for you to do by then.
Or you might just keep kicking the can down the road until 6 months later, when you’d find yourself still trying to find “the right moment” to get started.
Have you reached you big dreams yet?
Do you have success getting those big projects done?
Do you agree with me that “it’s the little things that big dreams are made of?”
I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.
And please share this article on your social sites 🙂