Introducing: Kaizen

Just like Ege expressed in her recent post “So, Do You Always Live Like This?” no, we don’t always live like this. We may mention our quicker and more effective methods, but that doesn’t change the quandary we find ourselves in during specific periods. For example, I can say that I still suffer from not being able to make time for some things. I have wishes that may seem simple but are difficult to realize such as making more time for the project I have on my mind, decreasing my list of books that I want to read (which keeps on getting longer), or making meditation a daily activity rather than sporadic. Apart from my accomplishments to this day, there are also plenty of things I’ve postponed.

And so it was exactly during this dead-end that I discovered Kaizen, a movement inspired by the Japanese art of slow living. Its actual purpose is to ensure the continuity of change and development. A perspective that people, whose New Year’s resolutions in January are postponed to February, should especially discover. Kaizen proposes that you only take one step every time. It aims to slowly raise the bar and maintain this level over a long period of time, rather than raising it too high in a short amount of time with unrealistic expectations. In other words allocating even two minutes to that goal means that you’ve done something that day to reach it. The important key is to calculate the remaining steps instead of focusing on the quality of the results.

I, who entered the New Year with a head full of thoughts and a long to-do list, have been inspired thoroughly by Kaizen. I wanted those, who are not yet familiar with the concept, to at least be aware of its name, while those who already know it have felt the joy akin to seeing an old friend. I’m off to do the two minutes of meditation I promised. And to you I say, meet Kaizen at the very first step of that long stairwell.



Translated by Feride Yalav-Heckeroth


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