That First Step’s a Doozy

The definition of doozy: something that is usually good, bad, big, severe, etc. Usually one of a kind.

I always read the title idiom as a bad thing. A BIG, bad thing. Maybe that is why it is so hard to take the first step in any new project or commitment. Maybe that is why it is easier to read about the things that are wrong, or complain about what is making me miserable instead of taking action. Well, I have hereby declared this practice to be ridiculous!

It is silly to sit back and complain when I have the power to do something, even if that something is terribly small. Even if my effort or action will not completely solve the problem, I have decided that it is better to have a little good than abandoning everything to decay. I am applying this to my diet, my house-keeping, my wardrobe, my work habits, and my involvement in world justice efforts. I will choose to make whatever small difference I can in my life and in contributing to positive change in the world.

Here is where I would like to introduce a sappy story to prove my point; The Starfish Story, to be exact. 

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Ok, so seriously sappy and way overdone, but sometimes things get overdone because they say it way better than we ever could.

It matters to the child I sponsor through Compassion International even if I can’t feed and educate every child in the world. It matters that I buy organic cocoa to reduce the slave-labor that contributes to my indulgences, even if I can’t stop the global slave trade. It matters when I pick up a pair of socks from the floor because at least those socks will not contribute to the overall chaos of the house, even if the whole house is rarely all clean at the same time. Every time I choose an apple over a brownie it’s a victory! My new goal is not perfection, but action.

I have perfectionist and people-pleasing issues. There, judge me… just kidding. I know that I am not alone in this swirling mess of guilt for falling short and fear of other people finding out. But seriously, I have come to realize that this is beyond ridiculous. No one gets it all right all the time. We might be surrounded by perfect stories in magazines, online, tv, and movies. Ads may try to sell us that next thing that will finally bring perfection to our lives, but the reality is that life is messy. And those pictures are photoshopped.

Action beats inaction. Any effort beats giving up. Every healthy, positive choice you make contributes something positive and healthy to your life! So at the end of January, stop beating yourself up for failing at that diet or exercise resolution. Stop it! Rejoice in the small victories and determine to keep making positive steps. You may never get it all right, but you can be better than you were before.

That’s Refreshing!

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