Lest the size of a problem you are facing overwhelm you into paralysis, zero in on the next right step you need to take and start there. You may have a long list of objectives, but it can be too much to look at all of them at once. So, pick an important one and take a real step in the right direction. After accomplishing that step things may look different from your new vantage point. In any case, you will probably be able to focus on the next right step after that one!
I’m not much of a hiker, but I once took a week-long hiking trip in Switzerland. It was a series of day hikes in the Alps around beautiful Zermatt, home of the Matterhorn. Even though I had trained to be in shape for the hikes, I was one of the slower hikers in our group. While on a steep portion of a trail one of our guides noticed my huffing and puffing and gave me some kindly advice. He said, “When the trail is steep take shorter steps and don’t look up the trail.” He was right–things were easier when I did that.
The Brooklyn Bridge (shown above) was initially designed by German immigrant John Augustus Roebling with construction beginning in 1870. After an accident during the initial surveys for the bridge (which later led to his death), he placed his 32-year-old son Washington Roebling in charge of the project. After the son was also injured in an accident related to the bridge and could not leave his home, prospects for the project looked dim. However, he managed to supervise the ongoing design and construction from his apartment. His wife studied higher math and engineering to assist him in the last 11 years of the project, performing many of the duties of chief engineer. The bridge opened in 1883 with his wife leading the way for those first to cross it, including President Chester Arthur. The history is thrilling to read. (Check it out in Wikipedia—and also read the article on Washington Roebling.)
How was this feat accomplished? One step at a time. Many of the challenges were not discovered until the building of the bridge was underway. It was the first bridge of its type in the United States, and at that time was 50% longer than any other bridge in the world.
When challenges come your way, do the leg work…get support, wise counsel, and be open minded about possible changes to your plans…then act. You’ll be on your way to something good!