William Liao

May 2, 2021

Think Big, Work Small

Inspired by John Cutler’s writings on Think Big, Work Small: https://cutlefish.substack.com/p/tbm-452-think-big-work-small-part

It’s normal to want to visualize your goals in their loftiest and most exciting forms: 

A writer might look forward to their first novel.

A start-up with an encouraging business model might look forward to great financial success.

The problem with visualizing goals in this way is that it can be difficult to work backwards and figure out where to start to make them a reality. 

Instead, a more helpful way to frame your most ambitious goals might be to think about them in terms of smaller units of progress:

Instead of publishing your first novel, you might initially focus on writing the first page. 

Instead anticipating the ambiguous state of ‘financial success’, you might focus how to on earning your first dollar, then $10, then $100, and so forth. 

Segmenting your dreams into smaller units may not present the same flashy aura you’re used imagining, but developing the discipline to do this does offer one important thing in exchange: clear, measurable steps forward that you can act to bring your dreams closer to reality.