One of the biggest challenges with change is that it can be overwhelming. There are many reasons why we might be averse to constant change, but when it is just simply too much all at once, we will find ourselves overwhelmed and in this space, our ability to make healthy decisions is seriously hampered.
The secret to sustainable, non-overwhelming change is to approach it with the 1% rule. This rule basically recognises that we don’t need to be twice as effective to achieve twice as much. We only need to be a little bit more effective, every single day. Improving 1% and sustaining that change, and then building on it 1% at a time, means that our change will be exponential over the long term.
When we procrastinate and avoid change, we start looking down the barrel of a very intimidating gun and think there’s no way we can survive what faces us. But, if we choose to make small changes every day, we can avoid being overwhelmed by change altogether!
Consider two plants in a forest that have just broken through the soil and catch the early rays of sun on their leaves for the first time. If one plant will grow and take over the area, it doesn’t have to grow twice, three times or even ten times faster than the other one. All it has to do is grow a tiny bit faster each day.
With each day, the plant that grows faster will soak up a little more sunlight, absorb more nutrients and very soon, it will overshadow the other plant. It will most likely be significantly larger and healthier within a few weeks, just by growing a little faster every day.
If you want to change your financial situation, you don’t need to earn double your income or half your expenses. If you want to improve your personal relationships, you don’t have to find twice as much time in your day; you can improve by showing a little more interest every day and showing up 1% more than you do already.
If you want to improve your health, you don’t have to cut sugar, meat, dairy and gluten all at once. You can start by eating clean one day a week (which is actually 1/7, or 14%), then two days, then three, until you reach your healthy sweet spot. Within a few weeks, you’ll realise that you’ve achieved a goal that would have completely overwhelmed you and derailed your plan to change if tackled full-on at the start.
Changing your financial situation could mean changing how you save and spend or changing how you feel and talk about your money. These changes can be daunting, but you can avoid being overwhelmed by change if you can commit to making small changes every day.