Monday, January 11, 2010

Baby steps.

Even in Japan, it seems that small-scale farming is taking off. Which makes me think that any exceuses I had for not doing it in the past, like not having much room or not having a lot of time, really don't mean much.

Now I'll grant you, it didn't take finding this article to make the decision to do some small-scale gardening. It really just cemented the idea in my mind.

For a while now, I've been a strong advocate of the "baby steps" way of doing things. Doing too much at one time didn't get me anywhere, and left me discouraged when I realized that it didn't get me anywhere.

But then I started thinking of doing things in baby steps, habit-building tiny changes that add up over time, and I've found more success in such projects.

Like knitting. Just because I couldn't knit a huge lace shawl in a week didn't mean that knitting a single pattern repeat a day wouldn't show progress, and wouldn't take much time out of my day.

I couldn't lose weight for a long time, no matter how hard I tried. Then I started doing tiny little things like stretches twice a day and drinking a little more water, changes so small that they didn't feel like they could possibly be doing anything to help me, and suddenly I lost ten pounds in only two month. Strict diets hadn't worked. Trying to go to the gym three times a week hadn't gotten me anywhere. They were large gestures that become a chore rather than an enjoyment, and I stopped them quickly.

Baby steps work. So just because I don't have an acre to plant a field of corn doesn't mean I can start off by filling a tote bin with soil and trying to grow a few carrots. They may only provide a meal or two worth of food, but it's a start, and every little bit will count.

And if a bunch of pressed-for-time inner-city Japanese business men can take a little time to tend a tiny g=vegetable garden, then so can I.

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