What are Microscopic Steps?

When starting any new activity or project it can sometimes seem very daunting or complicated and even as if there will never be a time when it will be finished.  And all of this can seem overwhelming at the beginning of it.  But a great saying from the great Chinese philosopher Lao-Tzu is that “every journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step”.  The same is true or any activity undertaken.

So what is a microscopic step then?  A microscopic step is when the focus is on something that is very small, a small part of a step, as the first part to doing even that step. The idea with a microscopic step is that it is something very simple and very easy to do.smiling businesswoman stepping on chart bar

As an example a microscopic step may be writing down the time or date that you are going to undertake an activity, it may be checking the phone number of someone that you will call later, or it could be getting out books that you are going to sort at a later time.  The key is that you are taking a small action towards the completion of a larger task.

Another good example is in the area of health and fitness.  Many people decide to get healthy and set up grand plans and ideas as to what they would like to achieve.  They start some activities like dieting and exercising daily and then very soon it can all become too hard so they stop and don’t continue on with any of it at all.  In many ways they have been too ambitious too quickly.

If they had of instead begun with a smaller microscopic step, say moving for at least 5 minutes a day, then that is something that could be done each day. And because it would not become too hard, as it is so small to do, then it could become a part of their everyday activities.  So similar to brushing your teeth this microscopic step of moving for 5 minutes a day could become a habit as well.

These are examples of a microscopic steps and anyone can create their own versions of these with the definitions that they choose to make.  The success of these smaller steps is because by being so small and achievable then people start to believe that the bigger goals are also achievable as well.  And very soon people start to believe that they can finish those thousand miles (those activies) that they have started out on.