Not too many years ago, my wife noticed my style of work as trying to accomplish overwhelming tasks by overloading myself to the point of exhaustion. It was about the same time that I noticed how she worked, which was quite the opposite approach as mine. I can’t believe it didn’t occurred to me sooner. While I got a lot more done in the same time frame, I was beat and ready for a beer, while she was setting off to start anther project. What she pointed out was that steady, consistent work pays off, leaving you with the time and energy to enjoy the reward of your labor.
Later on, she noticed the same tendency in my saving habits. I would get a sizable check and devote as much of it to savings, even if it meant being stretched thin later in the month. She, however, would take the $12.00 she saved on groceries and put it in savings. She called this “chipping away”, so I dubbed her ‘The Chipper’. The slow and steady, little by little approach has paid off in many ways, and I learned some valuable lessons from my wife in the first few years of marriage. I think our opposite ways of dealing with tasks, time, money, and especially long-term goals blended well. But ultimately, our combined chipping built our lives in a way that my all-or-nothing, burn-out style just couldn’t have built. I discovered that small and consistent builds stronger and lasts longer than the ‘get rich quick’, ‘buy now – pay later’ mindset. This was a valuable lesson, indeed.
So my word to you is this: If you want to accomplish something, start small. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Pace yourself. By tackling more than can be handled, discouragement comes easily, especially after realizing that completing what was started and continuing at that pace could be fatal. This often results in giving up on the venture, no matter how significant it may be. Practice becoming a Chipper; its reward is for the long haul.