Resolution 3 - Take real baby steps

Published by Lori Pickert on January 5, 2011 at 03:03 PM

People think of baby steps as small, slow. Tentative. If you hear someone say they’re taking baby steps, you might imagine them inching their way forward.

Really, babies learning to walk are sometimes careful but often bold, taking headlong strides, then sitting down hard. If you’re lucky, that’s followed by laughing .. and even if they’re not laughing, they’re usually getting right back up to try again.

Babies take on the hardest jobs with, in general, the best attitudes. Learning to walk, learning to talk, learning everything from scratch. And they’re successful virtually 100% of the time.

Maybe the reason we lose the ability to launch ourselves into thin air with confidence and excitement is because we’ve lost our willingness to admit there’s something we haven’t mastered. We’d rather fake our way through and inch along. Maybe we’re unwilling to sit down hard, for fear someone might be watching. Maybe we doubt our ability to get back up and try again.

Maybe the first step to being bold is admitting you don’t know what you’re doing.

Decide to take real baby steps in the direction you want to go.

Be bold. Be adventurous. Try. Don’t worry if you have a setback. Consider all failures temporary. Know that you will eventually succeed, as long as you keep working at it. Grab onto the furniture if you need to. Go.


Resolution 1 — It’s not all or nothing.

Resolution 2 — Break it down.

Resolution 3 — Take real baby steps.

Resolution 4 — Use the upward spiral.

Resolution 5 — Quit.


Comment by sarah :: greenclogs on January 5, 2011 at 04:00 PM

Oh my - I can so relate to this right now! The 9 month old is strongly considering those baby steps. I love watching her gather herself up for her big new adventures.

I read this out loud to the kids and we're talking about what we want to learn but have been afraid to try. I see some new paths opening up out there.

Comment by patricia on January 5, 2011 at 04:38 PM

You're right, Lori--real baby steps are big and sloppy and brave! I never thought about the tired old baby-steps analogy that way before. But now I love it. It works for me. I'm trying something I've never done before--pitching a feature article to a magazine. These voices keep creeping in--they'll never go for this, you don't have enough publication credits, these experts will never want to interview with you... But another part of me keeps thinking about how I'd feel if I push my passion for this particular topic down and don't *try* to write this article, and I know I have to keep going. Like a ridiculous, oversized, lumbering baby.

Off to write!

Comment by Queen of Carrots on January 5, 2011 at 05:43 PM

Many years ago I took Hebrew classes for awhile and the teacher encouraged one struggling student by saying, "You must be willing to become a little child in order to learn another language." I can't remember whether it was my own expansion or his that added, "You must become as a little child in order to learn anything," but it has guided me ever since.
A couple of weeks ago I was meeting with an attorney who is hiring me to do some document analysis for him and he said, "Now it's going to be like going back to kindergarten to learn this."
Learning at any level takes all the courage and humility of little children, who are not afraid to not know.

Comment by Luisa on January 5, 2011 at 08:08 PM

Bold and encourageing. Sounds like a good way to start the New Year.

Comment by JoVE on January 5, 2011 at 09:16 PM

This is brilliant. This whole series is brilliant. I'm looking forward to #4.

Comment by Amy on January 6, 2011 at 12:44 AM

Again... exactly what I needed to hear. I've missed your posts, Lori.

Comment by Barbara in NC on January 6, 2011 at 04:25 AM

Lori, this whole series of posts is so wonderful. Both practical and inspirational, which is hard to pull off!!

Makes me seriously want to meet you in person and take you out for coffee.

Comment by Ginger on January 6, 2011 at 10:44 PM

I enjoyed these so much. My goal is to implement your CC suggestions for myself and my own projects. I think I need to relearn how to learn. I have the giant baby steps all covered, but am looking forward to finding the many steps between perfection and quitting.

Thanks and happy new year!

Comment by amy on January 7, 2011 at 01:16 AM

It's so nice to see you back!


Comment by Lori Pickert on January 7, 2011 at 09:44 PM

sarah, that is great! love that you read it to the kids. :)

hi patricia, and i’m glad you like. ;)

good luck with your pitch! keep on going! :D

q. of c., that is exactly what i was trying to say above .. it’s that willingness that is the doorway to learning/tackling something really big!

so so true that children aren’t afraid to not know!

luisa, it does. :)

hi joVE, and thank you! happy new year!

thank you, amy. :) xoxoxo

b, thank you so much .. lol, so true .. inspiration is good, but get real, practical makes it achievable! :)

i don’t drink coffee, but you could take me out for hot chocolate. ;)

thank you, ginger! this extended conversation about goals and resolutions is really about cultivating a certain set of attitudes that i think make success more achievable. and that does (imho) create circumstances that better encourage and support learning.

lol i’m glad you have the giant baby steps covered. ;) keep feeling for that happy medium between perfection and quitting! and happy new year to you & yours, too. xoxoxo

thank you, amy! :)

Comment by Dawn Suzette on January 7, 2011 at 11:59 PM

Those little one are so darn successful... and with knocks that would send me to the hospital.
I am excited by the things still out there to learn... even if I never "master" anything. My fear comes not from the learning but from the putting in to action what I learn. That is where my momentum takes a hit. That is where my bold adventurous spirit lags back a bit... waiting. Need to let that momentum take me forward until I fly or fall on my face... and get up again!
Awesome post Lori!

Comment by Sara on January 8, 2011 at 06:29 AM

As has already been said, this is brilliant. This post, in particular, gave me all the fodder I needed for my evening journal entry in my old-fashioned paper journal I write. Thank you.

Comment by Lori Pickert on January 8, 2011 at 04:02 PM

dawn, that is so true .. putting what we learn into action is so essential but can be so hard!

thank you, and happy new year to you & your family! xoxo

sara, thank you so much. glad to help a fellow journal writer out. ;) happy new year!

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