Celebrate the Small


Why choose to celebrate small? After all, isn’t that the ‘anti’ view of the world as we know it? Phrases like, “Big is Better” or “Go Big or Go Home” fill our news and social media feeds every day. But, is that really the best or desired choice? Choosing to do it the first place and choosing to do it in a small and thoughtful way has so many advantages.

From where I sit, small is beautiful, probably stemming from the fact that I am small and scrappy. I resonate with the advantages of the small and its underdog nature as a consistently successful concept. 

 Small is so many things on so many levels once you start to really see it. I think of it in terms of small steps, small wins.  Small issues allow us to navigate the uncertain and new in ways that big cannot. At best, big is the status quo.

Small on the other hand, is nimble and quick. Big takes up space needing all sorts of complex coordination to make a move, while Small quickly assesses the situation and quietly and simply, changes course. Since lengthy critical planning is less necessary for small, when things do go awry, it’s easier to correct course in real time. Overcoming mistakes allows us to get through small failures faster, providing us the opportunity to learn and move on to the next. 

Big is impersonal while Small is face to face. Small is great for curating ideas and allows us to see what’s happening in real time. The mission of big is growth while small focuses on quality. It’s easier to recover and it’s not so daunting to get out there in the first place with small. The manageable nature of small allows us to get our heads around things with more ease and accuracy - and less angst. The result? We’re more likely to stay with it not giving up too soon with small. And, it’s meaningful and motivating to celebrate even small wins.

In its most effective form, small often demands we slow down being fully present in order to experience things as we go, or we’re apt to miss them altogether.  Remember fire flies? Hot, muggy summer nights, when it was easier to stay indoors but if we had, we’d have missed out on the wonders of those small, yellow beams of light buzzing around us filling our imaginations with wonder and awe. Small but beautiful.

Small projects, small portions, small victories. While big seeks but rarely lands beyond average, we can make a difference and have impact by showing others how to revere and do small well. Small steps do add up to big successes.

Let’s remember to celebrate the small every day.

Allison Towe