Are you trying to make big changes in your life? Maybe you are trying to beat an addiction, maybe you are trying to create new habits, maybe a combination of both. Perhaps you are working towards some great business goal, or maybe you are trying to expand your mind, find love, save money…the list of goals we can have in life is endless.

And making change is hard, isn’t it?

I am sure you have heard that famous quote by Lao Tzu, The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. This tells us that no matter how big the task ahead of us, we can only tackle it one step at a time, and that first step, while it might seem a long way from the goal, is at least a step towards that goal.

Any big change we make in life can seem impossible to achieve when you look at the end goal. Looking at the small steps you can take towards the goal, just focusing on the next action you can take and not worrying about the rest that are to come, is a really helpful way to avoid the panic, stress and overwhelm that can thwart the best of intentions and plans. Having the overall goal in mind is important, but you can only get there one step at a time.

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When I stopped drinking back in 2014, had I looked at the result of ‘a future without any alcohol in it, I would have panicked and almost certainly bought wine. But looking at a day without alcohol in it was manageable. Reflecting at the end of the day on how good that day felt gradually helped me to see that days without wine weren’t impossible to manage. With the new coping strategies I had been taught in yoga teacher training, eventually I was able to imagine a happy life without alcohol, as I was able to see that I actually preferred the days that were alcohol free. It took a long time before I was fully able to embrace the idea of an alcohol free life but gradually.

I later wrote a blog post about the ‘circle of change’ that I realised I had created in my recovery, you can learn more about this here

One step at a time, one day action at a time, maybe even one breath at a time. Whatever it is you want to achieve in your life, you can do it as long as you focus on what you need to do right now to achieve that goal.

In the words of Mother Theresa,

“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.”

What actions can you take today, right now, that will lead you closer to the future you want to have? I would love to know what goal you are working towards, and what step you are going to take today to reach that goal. Share in the comments and let me know one positive action you are going to take today, and I will cheer you on!

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Esther Nagle
Teacher, writer, speaker at Balance and Breathe
Esther is a former alcoholic, smoker and all round stressed out mess. She found the path to health, happiness, freedom and joy through Yoga. She is a passionate advocate for the power of Yoga, and time in Nature, in bringing balance to life, and giving you control over your health, happiness and wellbeing.

Esther is a powerful public speaker, writer and author. Her first book, Bent Back into Shape, Beating Addiction Through Yoga, has gained many 5 star reviews and has helped many people along their recovery journey.

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