One Step at a Time - The Power of Small Wins - Blog

One Step at a Time – The Power of Small Wins

It can be tough to stay motivated when you’re working on big goals.

Getting to a dream job, a dream house or any other major milestone in life can be daunting. Sometimes it feels like you’re not making any progress at all, and it’s easy to get discouraged.

But if you break your goal down into small steps, it becomes a lot more manageable.

inspirational message that says, "Small steps every day"

And when you achieve small wins along the way, it keeps your motivation level high and helps you stay focused on your ultimate goal.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss the power of small wins and how they can help you achieve success in whatever you’re striving for, including happiness.

For a quick dose of motivation on harnessing the power of small wins, check out our video!

What Are Small Wins, and Why Are They Important?

A small win is simply a victory or success, no matter how small.

It could be something as simple as making your bed in the morning or taking a break from work to go for a walk.

Another way to think about a small win is as a manageable task you can complete in a relatively short amount of time.

For instance, if you’re trying to eat healthier, a small win might be substituting a baked good for a piece of fruit every day.

Small wins are important for several reasons:

1. Small Wins Indicate Progress, Which Serves as Intrinsic Motivation

People are motivated by progress.

Making progress every day toward your goals keeps you moving forward.

Progress gives you a sense of accomplishment and motivates you to continue working towards your larger goals.

A small win is a tangible way to see progress, even if it’s just a tiny amount. It serves as positive feedback that you’re on the right track. Small wins boost motivation and keep you going even when the going gets tough.

2. Small Wins Keep You Focused

Small wins help break down the feeling that your goal is overwhelming and impossible to achieve.

This is why people who set smaller goals tend to be more successful than those who set big goals.

You end up feeling overwhelmed and frustrated when you set a goal with no specific plan or strategy.

But when you set small goals, you have a clear plan of action, and you know exactly what you need to do to achieve your goal.

This keeps you focused and motivated to keep going.

Let’s say you want to write a book.

If you don’t have a clear plan for accomplishing this goal, you might find yourself getting distracted from your main objective.

So, focus first on creating an outline. Then once you have an idea of where you want to go, start writing chapters.

Once you finish one chapter, you can move on to another.

This incremental progress and forward movement will keep you motivated and focused on your goal.

As you complete each chapter, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment, which will help keep you going until you reach the end of your book!

Small wins also give you something to look forward to. If you know that you’re going to accomplish a small win today, you’ll be much more likely to do so than if you didn’t think you were going to accomplish anything.

3. Small Wins Increase Your Confidence

The more confident you are, the easier it is to accomplish your goals.

When you believe in yourself and your abilities, you’ll take action and follow through with your plans.

When you think you won’t succeed, you’ll procrastinate and put off taking action.

So, if you want more confidence, look for small wins.

For example, don’t focus on losing 10 pounds if you’re trying to lose weight. Instead, focus on drinking eight glasses of water a day or going for a walk every day.

These small changes will lead to big results over time and give you the self-confidence you need to keep going.

4. Small Wins Build Momentum

Small wins create a sense of momentum.

When you get a few small wins under your belt, it becomes easier to believe in yourself and your abilities.

It’s like a domino effect. Once you start making progress, it becomes easier and easier to keep going.

Small wins add up, and it becomes easier to achieve the next one.

And, since you have already accomplished something, you’ll be even more motivated to keep going.

Before you know it, your small wins lead to big wins!

inspirational Tanzanian proverb that says, "little by little a little becomes a lot"

This motivation is critical to sustaining long-term success. The more small wins you accumulate, the easier it will be to reach your goals.

So, if you’re working towards a big goal, think about ways to break it down into small wins.

How to Set Yourself up for Success With Small Wins

Now that you know the power of small wins, it’s time to put them into action!

Here are some tips for setting yourself up for success.

1) Start With a Plan

Before you begin any new endeavor, create a plan.

Without a plan, you’ll feel overwhelmed and discouraged. You’ll probably end up quitting before you’ve even started.

Start by breaking your goal down into small, manageable steps.

Then, create a timeline for when you want to achieve each step.

2) Set Realistic Expectations

Make sure that the steps and timeline in your plan are realistic and achievable to stay motivated and on track.

Look for any serious flaws in your plan, such as unrealistic expectations. They only set you up for failure.

For instance, if you expect to lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks by severely limiting your caloric intake, you may find yourself giving up after a few days.

Instead, figure out what you can actually do. Start by cutting out a sugary drink or unhealthy snack from your everyday diet for a week. Then, add another item to your list.

All the small wins add up; before long, you’ll have lost weight without even trying.

3) Keep Track of Your Progress

Keeping track of your progress is key to accomplishing your overall goal.

You need to see how far you’ve come and where you still have left to go.

This way, you’ll always be able to tell whether you’re making progress or falling behind.

For example, if you want to save money to purchase a house, you can set monthly and/or weekly targets and use a spreadsheet to track your progress.

You’ll be able to see your small victories and keep your eye on the bigger picture.

4) Celebrate Small Wins

inspirational message that says, "Celebrate every win no matter how small"

Acknowledge your accomplishments and celebrate them.

Even if you don’t think you deserve it, acknowledge your small successes anyway.

Celebrating small wins is important because it motivates you to continue working toward your larger goal.

Reward yourself when you reach milestones along the way. Make the process fun and enjoyable, so you’ll be more likely to stick with it.

5) Make Sure You’re Passionate About Your Goal

You need to be passionate about your goal for small wins to work.

If you’re not passionate about what you’re doing, it will be tough to stay motivated and achieve your goals.

Find something that you’re excited about and make that your focus.

For instance, if you want to start a business, choose an industry you’re passionate about.

Doing so will make you more likely to persist on dark days with ebbing motivation, and any small step forward will fuel your desire to achieve your goal.

6) Don’t Be Afraid to Fail

Failure is part of life.

We all fail at things sometimes, especially if it’s our first attempt at something.

But don’t let that stop you from going after your goals.

If you fail at something, learn from it and move on.

Failure doesn’t mean that you won’t succeed in the future. It just means that you aren’t there yet.

When you fail, just pick yourself back up and try again.

It takes time to build momentum. Be patient and persistent.

The path to the finish line usually isn’t a straight one.

You will have good days and bad days.

The important thing is to never give up on yourself.

Keep at it until you succeed.

7) Find a Support Group or Accountability Partner

Having someone to support and encourage you can make all the difference.

Find a friend or family member who will be cheering you on along the way and keeping you accountable.

You could also join an online community or support group. Or, hire a coach or accountability partner to help you stay on track.

Another effective idea is to use an accountability calendar. Every time you meet a milestone, mark it on your calendar. Before you know it, you’ll start achieving streaks of success, streaks that you will become increasingly motivated not to break.

Small Wins Can Lead to Happiness

To many people, happiness seems unachievable.

They think they need to achieve their goals in order to be happy.

But the truth is happiness doesn’t come from achieving your goals.

Happiness comes from taking small steps toward your goals.

When you focus on small wins, you’ll find that feeling happy comes more easily.

Celebrate every step forward, including all the tiny victories, and you’ll start feeling happier.

Final Thoughts

Small wins are important because they give you a sense of accomplishment and keep you motivated.

When you’re working toward a goal, celebrate your small wins along the way.

Set yourself up for success by creating a plan, setting realistic expectations, and keeping track of your progress.

Don’t be afraid to fail, and find someone to provide support along the way.

One step at a time, small wins will get you there.

So keep going and never give up on yourself. You can do it!

If you’re searching for happiness, realize that it comes from taking small steps toward your goals.

If you focus on small wins, you’ll find that happiness comes more easily.

Also, remember that it’s the little things that matter most in life.

If you want to feel good, take time to do things you enjoy, keep in touch with your friends and family, and default to choosing kindness in your interactions with others.

These are small wins, or a little dose of happy, that you can achieve every day, and they’ll lead you to higher well-being in the long run.

list of 8 "small wins with a big impact"

Need some help getting started on your small wins?

Here are some ideas:

– Wake up early

– Eat a healthy meal

– Drink enough water throughout the day

– Tidy up a workspace

– Make a to-do list for the day

– Complete a task off the list

– Finish work on time or ahead of schedule

– Take a break every hour to stretch or walk around

– Implement some self-love affirmations into your daily routine

– Do something nice for someone else (Here are some ways to be kind)

– Use a happiness app, specifically the Do Happy: Daily Happier Habits App 🙂

Do Happy Daily Happier Habits app screens

Good luck!

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