Driving around town after our recent spring snowstorm, I noticed that areas west of College Avenue seemed much harder hit than those east of it—more fallen branches and remaining drifts. I mentioned it to my husband. “That’s the difference one degree can make,” he explained. Closer to the foothills the slightly-colder weather caused more snow to freeze on branches, resulting in more weight and breakage.

Just a single degree created that much difference. It got me thinking, how many one-degree shifts were driving positive…and negative…shifts in my own life?

“Shift” has been my theme for 2017—redirecting things in my profession and business. After 20 years of providing career support within one model, I’m changing to a different mode, one more in line with my future goals. I don’t know now many degrees of shift have already happened, but it feels like a lot. Some days I’m basking in the warmth of being at the right place at the right time, and other days I feel weighted and broken from a chilly move off course.

But what hadn’t occurred to me until just now is that those changes, even a teensy one, can be what tips things toward a significant outcome, good and bad.

Huge power can exist in small shifts. In an attempt to reach an important goal, making drastic changes isn’t always necessary—a tiny one may be all it takes to nudge things on or off course.

For me this looks like applauding myself for not jumping in with both feet to implement a new process, but instead taking small, steady steps to be sure things are working out okay, each inch of the way. It also looks like paying more careful attention to when a change I’ve made feels wrong, and to retract and correct it quickly, before it becomes a bigger problem.

It also gives me the freedom to play small. “Go big or go home”, has long been a recommended strategy. Yet microscopic adjustments over time—in temperature, direction, or anything else—can do as much to get the job done.

Photo Credit:  © creativecommonsstockphotos | Dreamstime Stock Photos