Kaizen is a Japanese term which means improvement. It was first employed by western consultants and Japanese manufacturing companies after WWII in an effort to rebuild the Japanese economy. The power of
Kaizen is that it focuses on small, incremental changes. Eventually, these changes accumulate to produce positive, measurable change.
The concept of Kaizen has been adapted to the Coaching field because when it is used for personal change it also results in supporting the changes we really want to make but can't because of fear. Robert Maurer, Ph.D. who wrote
a book about it called "One Small Step, the Kaizen Way," says, "All changes, even positive ones, are scary. Attempts to reach goals through radical or revolutionary means often fail because they heighten fear. But the small
steps of Kaizen disarm the brain's fear response, stimulating rational thought and creative play."
When you make a small, incremental change it bypasses the fear mechanism in your brain. When you continue to work these small changes you start to make progress and pretty soon you see results and suddenly you've completed this task
which has eluded you up to this point.
I am, without a doubt a person who is largely driven by getting things done. There is a great sense of accomplishment for me when that happens. Rather than just having a list of things I never get to that weighs on me, nags at me,
drains my energy, I like the thrill of checking off a completed task. Coaching is all about doing the things you really want to do while working to overcome the obstacles that prevent that from happening.
So, back to my experiment. Here's how it works:
Identify the activity you want or need to accomplish. Figure out what the first step would be. Ask yourself what needs to happen even before that. Start with the smallest step that moves you forward with that task. You don't have to
spend hours, but at least a bit of time each day...Then identify what your reward will be. Maybe it's watching TV or going onto Social Media. I recommend staying away from eating rewards for obvious reasons.
Doing an experiment like this helps to create movement and momentum. Do it long enough and it creates a new habit. When I employ this principle I get to reap the bigger rewards in my life by accomplishing the
things that matter to me...because ultimately, my goal is to fulfill my purpose in life.
If you are interested in making changes in your life that you haven't been able to make on your own, consider health and wellness coaching.
Click here to contact me.