I was at a science museum here in Salt Lake City this past Monday with my family. They had one exhibit where they were showing the first moon landing on TV as it would have been seen live in the sixties. Honestly initially it was slightly creepy.
There was a fake living room with one of those old time console TVs. In front of the TV were two mannequin youngsters that were a little too real (I could have sworn that one of them winked at me at one point). There were 60s era Life magazines on the coffee table and a half finished game of Parcheesi on the floor.
Like you, I’ve seen and heard it before but it’s always riveting to see video from that first Apollo 11 landing. You hear the classic Walter Cronkite narration and then the quote we are all so familiar with, ”That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
I know, I know–it’s a total cliche. But it can’t help but give me chills and get me thinking.
What are the small steps that we can take for our health that can turn into giant leaps? And on the other side what small things are we doing that can turn into giant leaps in the direction of poor health.
How we feel depends so much on all of those small “steps” that we take every day. Nobody wakes up 50 or 100 pounds overweight. We aren’t suddenly out of shape or completely stressed out. These things happen incrementally.
It’s pretty simple to gain 50-100 pounds in two years. You just have to gain one pound a week. It’s easier and easier not to exercise when you keep skipping it every day. Stress gets overwhelming when it builds on you day after day after day and you don’t do anything about it.
The good news is that the opposite is also true. If you loose a pound a week over two years you’ll have lost 100 pounds. If you just do a bit of exercise every day getting off the couch is easier and easier. If you take small steps daily to combat stress it won’t build up to toxic levels.
Don’t fool yourself–you won’t notice results over night–but the key is to stick with some small steps over time and let the results accumulate. Before long your small steps will add up to giant ones.
Here are some suggestions for small changes that will add up to big results:
- Don’t eat that handful of M&Ms every time you walk by your co-worker’s desk.
- Pack your own lunch.
- Try just eating a couple of pieces of fruit and some cut up veggies for lunch instead of going out.
- Park as far away as you can.
- Always take the stairs.
- Try doing a relaxing breath a couple of times throughout the day: Breathe in through your nose for a count of 4, hold for a count of 7, and breathe out through you nose for a count of 8.
- Pause and take one or two deep breaths before moving on to your next appointment or meeting.