The Big Deception of Big Success

June 30th, 2015 by Kelly Kienzle

Success is incremental.

Warren Bennis warned of the folly of waiting until you’ve achieved a major success before celebrating. Major success usually doesn’t happen that way. Success happens incrementally in very small ways over a long period of time. Waiting until the bid has been won, the project has launched or the profit number has been reached translates into a lot of waiting time.

Yet, what if we were to celebrate the small successes that are slowly yet doggedly leading us to our grand achievement?  What if we were to stop and appreciate what we did today or even this past hour that is another small step on the path that is leading us to where we ultimately want to be in a year, 2 years or the end of our life?

I propose that if we were to notice these small successes, then we would live more in the moment. We would be present to what is happening around us and, most importantly, why it is happening. It is happening because it is part of a larger design.

Suddenly our more mundane and trivial acts become a little more meaningful and engaging to us. The acts of returning an email, asking about a colleague’s weekend or proofing a document now have a slightly deeper and crisper objective to them. You are doing these acts because they are taking you somewhere.

What tiny steps did you take yesterday? Where are they leading you? And what will you do again tomorrow?

Leave a Reply