How Do You Eat an Elephant?

How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

Sometimes we come to a place where we look at a project or a goal or an assignment and think that it seems a little too much — perhaps impossible. It’s tempting to give up before even trying. You may be like Scarlett and decide to tackle it tomorrow…and tomorrow never comes. Maybe the sky will fall before the deadline, and then it won’t be an issue. One can always hope, right?

Just like it is impossible to swallow an elephant whole, we can’t tackle big things overnight. BUT — it can be done over time in pieces.

  • Break it down. What are the “bite-sized” parts of the whole project? What are little goals that will get you to the big goal? Making an action plan doesn’t just map a path to the end, it also helps break the big into lots of littles.Once you know the little pieces, you can simply look at the one step you need to take, just like chewing one bite. It works.
  • Start somewhere. I use this trick for myself a lot. Just taking one step toward the goal can break the cloud of feeling overwhelmed. That step in the right direction creates a tiny bit of momentum that puts you on the right track, even though it’s at the very beginning of that track. Now you’re ready to keep going!
  • Stick to it. It’s so tempting to want the easy solution, but there isn’t always a quick fix. Sometimes we simply need to keep chewing.If you know the path, know the steps, know you are on the right track, keep walking. It may be a long walk, but your faithfulness and hard work will pay off.

Bon appetit!