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How to Achieve Big Goals in Little Ways (i-mail article)

"And just when do you plan to begin?"I received this i-mail right in the middle of a great TV show. During a ... break some guy with ... abs came on the screen trying to sell me an expens

"And just when do you plan to begin?"

I received this i-mail right in the middle of a great TV show. During a commercial break some guy with washboard abs came on the screen trying to sell me an expensive piece of exercise equipment. I suppose that's what triggered the i-mail.

I attempted to ignore the intrusion but this never works. i-mail is like e-mail except it doesn't come with a delete button. It's sent internally.

As much as I wanted to continue watching the show, I knew I had to answer. "Okay...just what is it that I'm supposed to begin?"

"Getting your body in shape. Remember that promise you made to all of us down here? You were definitely going to get serious about exercising. We've been looking forward to that. You don't know what it's like living in the middle of all this flab. Nothing down here really works with any zing."

"Hey...I thought you understood. I can't just rush into something like this. Getting back into shape is a huge goal. It takes planning. Finding the right exercises. Scheduling time."

"In other words, you have no intention of starting."

"Whoa. Now you're putting words in my mouth. I didn't say that. You simply don't appreciate what a commitment I'm making."

From somewhere below came a loud snort. "Commitment! I don't think it's even a hazy wish."

"So what do you want? A five mile run every morning?"

"No...but a walk around the block might be least to begin with."

"Big deal. What's that supposed to accomplish except ten minutes of waving at people and trying to avoid the Johnson's dog."

"It's called momentum, my friend. That's a wonderful thing when you're going after a big goal. And believe me, getting things in shape down here is a big, big goal."

"I still don't understand how a walk around the block is going to accomplish anything."

"Turn off the television and I'll explain."

I did so with reluctance. Not that it probably mattered. I noticed somebody had just been killed and I didn't even recognize the character. Which meant I was a few miles behind on the plot.

"That's better," my Other-Self murmured. "Now, pay attention and learn something.

"You don't start off big goals with big steps. If you do, you'll end up stumbling over your feet. It's sort of like the old joke, ‛How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time."

"Stupid joke if you ask me. Who would want to eat an elephant?"

"That's not the point but never mind. You start working on any big goal by doing something small toward reaching that goal. Then tomorrow you do something else small. And every day after that. The important thing is to keep up the momentum."

"Yeah...I see what you mean. So I start by walking a block today. Then a block and a mailbox tomorrow. And pretty soon I'm making real progress toward becoming that guy with the great abs. Do you honestly think I could development a stomach like that?"

"Well...anything's possible I suppose."

"Sounds like you're putting me down. Come on now, I need an image to inspire me?"

"Okay...if washboard abs are your thing, go for it. But inspire yourself with small steps and tiny victories. Think in terms of progress. If you do, the big goal will happen without burnout."

"Okay, so I have this big goal, like getting into shape. But I begin in a small way such as a walk around the block. Then I congratulate myself on getting started. The next day I go a bit further and hold a progress celebration. Then, after enough celebrations, I arrive at my goal. Hey, I think I like that approach. Tomorrow I will definitely begin."

"Have you noticed it's not raining out? Nice evening for a walk RIGHT NOW, don't you think?"

Read more ‛i-mail articles' at You can also be among the first to receive new ‛i-mail articles' by subscribing free to Doug C. Grant's bi-monthly e-zineFree Web Content, THE EMPOWERED MATURITY PAGE. It's for anyone wanting to boost their life up a notch or two. Subscribe at:

Article Tags: Down Here, Walk Around

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Doug C. Grant retired from a successful career as a nationally recognized business writer & marketing consultant. He now helps members of the ‛Over-50', crowd live healthier, happier and more productive lives through his Empowered Maturity Web Site ( and an on-line interactive seminar.

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