Build a Ladder of Small Changes

20 Ways to Change Your Story

6. Build a Ladder of Small Changes

Stuck In A RutDo you ever feel so deeply stuck in a rut that you can barely see out over the top of it? Everything is so same-ole-same-ole that you can’t even imagine a new story. Does the thought of trying to climb out of that rut feel so overwhelming you don’t even know where to start?

If your rut story is in desperate need of a rewrite and you can’t seem to even muster up a “once upon a time,” much less a “happily ever after” then maybe what you need is not some big, scary, humongous let’s change everything approach. Maybe what you need is a ladder of small changes you can climb up one at a time.

You don’t need to be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. You don’t have to know exactly what you want.

You can start by doing just one thing different. It doesn’t matter what. It doesn’t have to be big.

  • Brush your teeth with the other hand tonight.
  • Take a different route to work in the morning.
  • If you usually wear a long tie, wear a bow tie or a bola tie or no tie at all.
  • If you usually wear a dress wear slacks.
  • Change the radio station in your car.
  • Walk or run your usual route in the reverse direction for a change.
  • Try a different exercise, class or piece of equipment at the gym.
  • Sit in a different chair in your classroom, church or staff meeting.
  • Eat breakfast food for dinner or dinner food for breakfast.
  • Smile at the people you pass.
  • Watch a show you’ve never seen before.
  • Turn off Facebook or your favorite app for just one day.
  • Flip through a travel brochure instead of going online.
  • Wander through an art museum.
  • Go to the library and choose a book at random to read.
  • Pitch a tent in the backyard and dream under the stars.

You get the idea. None of these cost any money or take any more time out of your already busy schedule. They don’t require a ton of effort or imagination. They just work to shake things up in little, non-threatening ways. They wake you up a tiny bit and get your brain moving differently.

Choose one little change and do it for a week. Or choose a different one each day for a week.

Then do it again for another week.

What do you notice that’s different when you make any of these small, random changes? Pay attention to any changes in energy or emotion, or any ideas that bubble up. Jot them in your Story Diary.

Ladder Out of RutI’m not saying your story will change overnight or miraculously. Things may start to feel just a little bit different. You may feel a tiny bit more energized. You may discover or rediscover something that makes your heart beat just a little faster or brings a smile to your face. You may decide to make a bigger change or two, to do that thing you’ve been putting off or to explore something new.

Over time those little changes will start to pile up. Rung by rung, you can build a ladder from them. Rung by rung, you can climb up out of the deep dark rut and back into the sunlight.

You can find your “once upon a time” AND your “happily ever after” by building a ladder of small changes.

This is the 7th post in a 21-post series sparked by Chapter 9 of Fallen, The Adventures of a Deep Water Leaf, in which Lizard suggests that Alora change her story.
#20WaysIn20Days, #ChangeYourStory, #Fallen

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