A Little Bit Of (Measured) Progress Each Day

Progress does not have to be extreme, but it has to be consistent and it has to be observable.

We all need to feel like we are making progress in our lives, like our lives have purpose and meaning. One way to accomplish this is to set measurable, achievable goals for each day. These goals can extend out to weeks, months, and years, but starting with daily goals is easy and, ultimately, we want to establish a routine that is ‘sticky,’ that we actually adhere to, not a routine that is so difficult that we quit shortly after starting.

In order to feel like we are making progress, it is essential that our goals are both measurable and achievable because measurability allows us to track our results and achievability ensures that we see results quickly and consistently. Tracking our goals and our results is important because writing them down, whether on paper, on a white board, or on a spreadsheet, makes them real and undeniable. Seeing results quickly and consistently gives us momentum and momentum will keep us going when desire does not.

What does this all mean in simple terms? It means to set a goal of doing one more rep, to lift one more pound, to run, bike, or walk for one more minute or for one more tenth of a mile, to take one more deep, meditative breath, to write one more sentence, to read one more page, to learn one more recipe, to spend one minute more outside, to reach out to one more person, or simply to be present for one more moment than yesterday. This all starts with writing down our goals, making a plan, and then taking action, consistently.

NOTE: There are experts out over who will be more than happy to help you create a plan for progress with whatever your personal goals and individual needs are. Comment below if you are in need of such an expert or if you are such an expert and are willing to provide this service for FREE in these unprecedentedly difficult times.


Holistic Budo: As it is in budo, so too it is in life. As it is in life, so too it is in budo.

Robert Van Valkenburgh is co-founder of Taikyoku Mind & Body and Kogen Dojo where he teaches Taikyoku Budo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

All photos by Robert Van Valkenburgh (artist unknown, unless otherwise noted).

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