The Effectiveness of Small

I think I’ve just proved the value of practicing small–in an inadvertent experiment, with one subject only.

Over the past few months, I’ve reverted to my former instinctual negative thinking.

I gave a talk in Sacramento last Thursday, and when I realized the next morning, that none of the organizers had emailed me their compliments, I began fretting. It didn’t take long for me to conclude, I must have bombed. I thought the attendees were appreciative, but I was obviously wrong. Not only did I bomb, but I failed completely at reading the audience.

One of my clients has fallen into a writing slump Not only is she unhappy with everything she’s writing, she hates everything she’s ever written. Instead of reminding myself that her struggles have erupted from conflicts and tensions in her own life, I took complete responsibility for her unhappiness. And from this one client, it didn’t take long for me to throw the net out to include all my clients: I’m not doing a good enough job. I thought I was helping the writers I work with, but I don’t know what I’m doing.

I’m sure you get the drift.

This morning, as I was walking around the Berkeley Marina, where I had a view of the sparkling Bay and across from that, the San Francisco skyline, one negative thought after another bubbled in my head. Finally, I caught myself. Enough. You haven’t been practicing thinking small enough. You need to practice every day for the next few weeks.

I’m going to follow my own advice, and I’ll let you know how it’s working. I can already assure you that by not practicing small, I’ve fallen into my old unhappy ways. That’s experiment enough for me.

Lone Leaf


2 thoughts on “The Effectiveness of Small”

  • I have been truly enjoying your posts on small. This one particularly hit me where I swim. Negative thoughts can be provoked by the smallest things. Then they pile up. I’m going to try this practice for the couple weeks too.

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